Advanced Solar PV development: Solar America Initiative
Funded under the Solar America Initiative, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced funding of up to USD 13.7 million, over three years (Fiscal Years 2008 - 2010), for 11 university-led projects that will focus on developing advanced solar photovoltaic (PV) technology manufacturing processes and products. Combined with a minimum university and industry cost share of 20%, up to USD 17.4 million will be invested in these projects. The project aims for selected universities to leverage fundamental understanding of materials and PV devices to help industry partners advance manufacturing processes and products. These projects have the potential to significantly reduce the cost of electricity produced by PV from current levels of USD 0.18-USD 0.23 per Kilowatt hour (kWh) to USD 0.05 - USD 0.10 per kWh by 2015 - a price that is competitive in markets nationwide. Each university will work closely with an industry partner for projects to retain a commercialisation focus and so that results are quickly transitioned into market ready-products and manufacturing processes. Additionally, students will be exposed to diverse PV-related commercialisation efforts, enhancing workforce development in an effort to increase competitiveness and retain qualified scientists in the growing domestic PV research and development industry. Projects were selected in response to DOEs 20 June 2007 Funding Opportunity Announcement - University Photovoltaic Process and Product Development Support - which seeks to strengthen university involvement in the rapidly growing PV industry.
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