Photovoltaic Research News

Visit the NREL news section for a complete list of NREL press releases and feature stories related to PV.

Oct. 22, 2021

NREL Drops the Bass on Solar Panels (for Science)

NREL researchers are not only skilled at making photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules. They are also world-class destroyers of PV modules. The goal is to discover and understand how these modules might degrade when installed outside for many decades. This helps other NREL researchers and engineers in the PV industry design better, longer-lasting modules.

Oct. 19, 2021

Sharing the Sun Market Report Details Expansive Growth, Recent Trends in Community Solar

New market report shows which states are leading growth in community solar.

Oct. 14, 2021

News Release: NREL, Mines Insight Could Lead to Better Silicon Solar Panels

Researchers at NREL and Colorado School of Mines are applying a new technique to identify defects in silicon solar cells that cause a drop in efficiency. The lessons learned at the atomic level could lead to improvements in the way manufacturers strengthen their products against what is known as light-induced degradation.

Oct. 8, 2021

Nano-Sized Materials Point to Big Breakthroughs

A poppy seed from your morning bagel is about 1,000 times larger than a bacterial cell. That small cell is about 1,000 times larger than the chemical structures NREL researchers are creating and studying to transform how we use energy.

Sept. 10, 2021

The Future of Agriculture Combined With Renewable Energy Finds Success at Jack's Solar Garden

A 24-acre family farm purchased by Jack Stingerie in 1972 has now evolved into a model for how to produce energy and food in tandem. Multiple agrivoltaics activities including crop production, pollinator habitat, ecosystem services, and pasture grass for grazing are being researched across Jack's Solar Garden in Longmont, Colorado.

Aug. 27, 2021

Space Mission Tests NREL Perovskite Solar Cells

The latest collaboration between NREL and NASA will evaluate the potential use of perovskite solar cells in space and assess the durability of materials used in those cells.

July 15, 2021

NREL, First Solar Celebrate Nearly 30 Years of Collaboration on Cadmium Telluride Solar Cell Research

NREL and First Solar Inc. have been collaboratively breaking ground on thin film solar technology for more than two decades, helping NREL fulfill its goal as a DOE national laboratory of commercializing technology through partnerships, and contributing to First Solar's success in development, manufacturing, and operation of photovoltaic (PV) power plants with technology that still bucks industry trends.

July 14, 2021

CdTe PV Accelerator Consortium Solicitation Aims To Enhance U.S. Competitiveness in Cadmium Telluride Thin Film Photovoltaic Technologies

DOE's Solar Energy Technologies Office announced $20 million for the Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) Photovoltaic (PV) Accelerator Consortium Solicitation to formalize the leadership of a consortium that will identify the technology development priorities to impact the entire domestic CdTe supply chain.

June 30, 2021

Solar Desalination Prize Round 2 Seeks Innovative Desalination Technologies Combined With Storage

Department of Energy launches second round of Solar Desalination Prize with new focus on storage.

June 17, 2021

Are Hybrid Systems Truly the Future of the Grid? NREL's Magic 8-Ball Says: "Concentrate and Ask Again."

Recent analyses suggest a need for coordinated dialogue and consistent modeling to understand the value of hybrid renewable energy systems.

June 8, 2021

New Pathway Emerges To Improve Polycrystalline Thin-Film Solar Cell Performance

Puzzling out and testing new ways to improve the efficiency of cadmium telluride (CdTe) polycrystalline thin-film photovoltaic materials is a typical day in the life of NREL research scientists Matthew Reese and Craig Perkins. Like any good puzzlers, they bring curiosity and keen observation to the task.

June 3, 2021

NREL Inventiveness Sets New Record for Patent Activity

NREL was granted 40 U.S. patents during fiscal 2020, a bump from the 32 issued during the prior fiscal year.

April 28, 2021

The Curtailment Paradox in a High Solar Future

A new NREL study uncovers counterintuitive relationship between flexibility options and curtailment in power systems with high solar penetration.

April 21, 2021

Department of Energy Funding Boosts US-MAP Research into Perovskites

New funding for perovskites is considered a significant step toward metal halide perovskite PV commercialization.

April 9, 2021

Ten Innovative Teams Emerge Victorious in Round 4 of the American-Made Solar Prize

On April 9, 2021, the U.S. Department of Energy announced 10 finalist teams that are moving forward in the American-Made Solar Prize Round 4 competition.

April 1, 2021

Scientists Studying Solar Try Solving a Dusty Problem

The accumulation of dust, soot, or other particulates causes a drop in the efficiency of solar panels, which translates to a decline in the amount of power produced and lost income for their operators.

Feb. 10, 2021

Documenting a Decade of Cost Declines for PV Systems

NREL marks ongoing cost reductions for installed photovoltaic (PV) systems, while also establishing benchmark of PV-plus-storage systems.

Feb. 9, 2021

New Design Strategy Pushes Organic Photovoltaics Past 18% Efficiency

Holistic strategy optimizes electronic structure and morphology, opening a new route to higher-efficiency organic photovoltaic devices.

Jan. 29, 2021

Reliability Analysis of the U.S. West Reviews Barriers to a Renewable Future

As part of a multistate collaboration, NREL has modeled and assessed long-term reliability and integration impacts of solar PV growth in the western United States, with broader lessons for power grids and renewable policies.

Jan. 8, 2021

Solar Prize Marks Milestone with Round 3 Winner and Round 4 Semifinalist Announcements

The sun has set on another round of the American-Made Solar Prize, awarding two new solar startups for their innovations.


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