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DOE to Invest up to $24 Million for Breakthrough Solar Energy Products

August 12, 2008

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy John Mizroch has announced that DOE will invest up to $24 million in FY2008 and beyond to develop solar energy products to significantly accelerate the penetration of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems in the United States.

The Solar Energy Grid Integration Systems projects will provide critical research and development funding to develop less expensive, higher performing products to enhance the value of solar PV systems to homeowners and business owners.

"Harnessing the natural and abundant power of the sun and cost-effectively converting it into energy is an important component of our comprehensive strategy to commercialize and deploy advanced, clean, alternative technologies to enhance our energy security," Mizroch said. "Our investment in these grid integration projects will lay the groundwork for high levels of solar photovoltaic market penetration."

The projects selected for negotiation of awards focus on collaborative research and development by U.S. industry teams to develop products that will allow PV to become a more integral part of household and commercial smart energy systems. The research teams' efforts are a critical step towards developing net-zero-energy homes, buildings and communities.

DOE has selected 12 industry teams to participate in cost-shared cooperative agreements focusing on conceptual design of hardware components and market analysis. For these 12 winning projects, $2.9 million total in DOE funding is leveraging $1.7 million in industry cost-share. The plan is to award additional contracts in Fiscal Year 2009 and in the out years for projects demonstrating the most promising technology advancements exhibiting a high likelihood of commercial success.

For more information about the funding and for a list of the teams selected, see the DOE press release.