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DOE Invests $53M in Solar Tech

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

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The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced that $53 million will be invested into projects to advance early-stage solar technologies. Financial assistance will be granted to 53 projects, which includes research and development in photovoltaics, concentrating solar power and expanding the industry through workforce initiatives.

The projects can be found throughout 21 states, including the District of Columbia, with $27.7 million going to 31 projects in photovoltaic research and development; $12.4 million going to 15 research projects in concentrating solar research; and $12.7 million going to 7 projects relating to workforce initiatives. Funding stems from the DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office

Solar Energy Investment

Selected photovoltaic projects deal with early-stage research that improves the reliability of PV cells, increases performance and reduces the amount of materials used. Concentrating solar power research and development is geared toward advancing components found in CSP subsystems, as well as research innovation. Workforce initiatives will provide the industry with guidance in working with more digital materials and adding employees to the industry, including veterans and others.

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The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced that $53 million will be invested into projects to advance early-stage solar technologies. Financial assistance will be granted to 53 projects, which includes research and development in photovoltaics, solar power and expanding the industry through workforce initiatives.

PSV projects chosen include:

  • For “Reliability Evaluation of Bifacial and Monofacial Glass/Glass Modules with Ethylene Vinyl Acetate and Non-EVA Encapsulants,” one of its projects, Arizona State University received $1.5 million;
  • Princeton University received $1.5 million for “Identifying Impacts of Process, Precursors and Defects in Metal Halide Perovskite Solar Cells;” and
  • KWH Analytics received $1.25 million for “Deciphering Degradation: Machine Learning on Real-World Performance Data.”

CSP projects also include:

  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University received $399,991 for “Durable and Low-Cost Fractal Structured Multifunctional Coatings for Next Generation CSP,” one of its projects;
  • $800,000 went to the University of Arizona for “Sensing and Arresting Metal Corrosion in Molten Chloride Salts at 800 [Degrees] Celsius;” and
  • The University of California, San Diego, received $400,000 for “High-Entropy Ceramic Coatings: Transformative New Materials for Environmentally Compatible Thin-Film Insulators against High-Temperature Molten Salts.”

As for workforce initiatives, among those chosen was Blue Lake Ranchera’s “Multi-Sector Solar Career Training Initiative for Native Americans and Veterans,” which received $600,000 in funding.

“Innovation is key to solar’s continued growth in our nation’s energy portfolio. It increases our energy diversity and reinforces our ‘all-of-the-above’ energy strategy,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry.

“Developing new skills through workforce training is critical to expanding job opportunities in the renewable sector, which is why we are following through on our program to reach out to military veterans with new projects that will target this committed workforce.” 

   

Tagged categories: Grants; Research and development; Solar energy; U.S. Department of Energy

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