Solar-cell Manufacturing Costs: Innovation Could Level The Field

Today, the average MSP is higher than the market price of solar panels, which is not sustainable long term. Thats why improved technology is essential, he says. Douglas Powell, a doctoral student in mechanical engineering at MIT and a co-author of the report, says that in 2012, the analysis suggests that the minimum sustainable price of modules was above current prices meaning that many manufacturers were not providing investors with adequate returns. One reason for that disparity: China rapidly ramped up its manufacturing capacity, and the market was still catching up in 2012 to the oversupply. They expanded really fast, and caught a lot of people by surprise, Powell says. Meanwhile Germany, which had been buying half of all PV modules produced worldwide, suddenly decreased its subsidies, drastically cutting demand. Still, the biggest factor contributing to Chinas ability to make solar panels for about 23 percent less than U.S. companies, Buonassisi says, turned out to be economies of scale.
Originally encountered at http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2013/solar-cell-manufacturing-costs-0905.html

Voyager 1 becomes first human-made object to leave solar system

As NASA scientists report that Voyager 1 has left the solar system, take a look at some of the amazing images the probe has provided its earthbound audience.

So thats 16 years. We will increase our use of electricity during that period, so add another couple of doublings: In 20 years well be meeting all of our energy needs with solar , based on this trend which has already been under way for 20 years. Of course, there are huge integration and storage issues that will need to be addressed. But his point about solar echoes what has occurred with green technologies such as the Prius. Consumer Reports recently found the Prius to have the lowest cost of ownership of any car. People buy it because of the economics. Similar things are happening with electric vehicles. Motor Trend just named the Tesla Model S its car of the year, and competitive in price with other luxury car peers. At its core, the Tesla Model S is simply a damned good car you happen to plug in to refuel. For Motor Trend, the environmental benefits are beside the point. The same process is happening with LED lighting. Once the limited province of Cree and a few others, the technology is now rapidly moving into the marketplace in the hands of Siemens , Philips , and GE, and it has gone mainstream. In fact, global LED lighting sales grew from $2.7 bn in 2008 to $9.4 bn in 2011.
Investigate the first version adding any type of supplementary images or video playback by making sure to visithttp://www.forbes.com/sites/peterdetwiler/2013/01/10/more-solar-innovation-stanfords-peel-and-stick-flexible-application/

More Solar Innovation: Stanford’s Peel and Stick Flexible Application

To get around that, scientists detected waves in the plasma around the spacecraft and used that information to calculate density. Vibrations in the plasma came from a large coronal mass ejection from the sun in 2012, resulting in what Stone called a “solar wind tsunami.” These vibrations reached the area around Voyager this spring. Measurements taken between April 9 and May 22 of this year show that Voyager 1 was, at that time, located in an area with an electron density of about 0.08 per cubic centimeter. This illustration shows NASA’s Voyager 1 spacecraft entering the space between stars. In the interstellar medium, the density of electrons is thought to be between 0.05 and 0.22 per cubic centimeter.
A Number Of Us stumbled upon this encouraging optimistic news piece found on http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/12/tech/innovation/voyager-solar-system/index.html

Solar Innovation Gets New ARPA-E Funding Chance

solarpanels

As renewable energy storage and grid integration are researched extensively within the Department of Energy, these workshops serve to expose the areas where more innovation is needed, foresee future technology and cost roadblocks, and enable the development of an investment strategy uniquely suited to ARPA-Es abilities as an agency. The FOCUS program follows on the heels of ARPA-Es Grid-Scale Rampable Intermittent Dispatchable Storage ( GRIDS ) and High Energy Advanced Thermal Storage ( HEATS ) programs, which aim to revolutionize cost-effective solutions to storing thermal energy on the grid. These programs, like FOCUS, support breakthrough technologies that can lower the cost of integrating renewable energy on the grid, while strengthening its reliability. ARPA-E invested a total of $71 million in these two programs. ARPA-Es investments in far-sighted and cutting-edge clean energy research suggest that seemingly impractical realities are not only attainable, but actually within our reach as long as we invest in the technology innovation to get us there.
First found at http://www.earthtechling.com/2013/08/solar-innovation-gets-new-arpa-e-funding-chance/

SPI 2013: Ginlong’s inverter innovations

Ginlong GCI-10K Three Phase Transformerless Inverter

The GCI-5K-H Single Phase Transformerless Hybrid Inverter, which was released in November last year, is a breakthrough innovation. It supports a hybrid solar and wind grid-tied system with a single inverter, in place of the industry standard practice of using two inverters, thus simplifying installation and reducing cost. The GCI-10K Three-Phase Transformerless Commercial Inverter is newly released to the North America Solar Market. Designed with the latest Silicon Carbide (SiC) and transformerless technology, GCI-10K realizes high efficiency (Peak Efficiency 98%), inherently high reliability and cost savings while maintaining the light weight and company design (88 lbs). It has one of the best performance-cost ratios in the world for this product class. Ginlong recently-upgraded GCI-2K and GCI-5K Single Phase Transformerless Solar Inverters also help encourage residential and commercial installations in North America. Among features of these innovative inverters are: Certifications to most of country standards such as UL1741 (CEC listed), CE, VDE, G83/G59, AS 4777 and CSA.
Initially uncovered at: http://www.solarnovus.com/spi-2013-ginlong-presents-its-latest-inverters_N6999.html

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