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National Center for Photovoltaics

The National Center for Photovoltaics (NCPV) at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) focuses on technology innovations that drive industry growth in U.S. photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing. The NCPV includes multiple capabilities in PV research, development, deployment, and outreach.

To help the U.S. photovoltaic industry maintain a competitive position, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) created the National Center for Photovoltaics (NCPV) in 1996. Learn more about the inaugural history of the NCPV.
Today, the NCPV activities support the DOE SunShot Initiative, which is administered by the DOE Solar Energy Technologies Office. The goal is to make large-scale solar energy systems (at low penetration) cost-competitive with other energy sources by 2020. The NCPV coordinates its research and goals with researchers from across the country, including the Quantum Energy and Sustainable Solar Technologies (QESST) Center and the Bay Area PV Consortium.

Sarah Kurtz and Greg Wilson are co-directors of the NCPV.

Research Cell Efficiency Records

Download the latest chart on record cell efficiencies and check out explanatory notes.

NREL partnered with other members of the Global Alliance of Solar Energy Research Institutes (GA-SERI) to consider trajectories and challenges for terawatt-scale photovoltaics. Download the following April 2017 Science article to learn more (Summary | Reprint | Full text).