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|More efficient and cost-competitive solar cells could bring America significantly closer to a sustainable energy future.
Credit: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory/Roy Kaltschmidt
The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will jointly provide up to $39 million for research to improve photovoltaic (PV) cell performance and reduce module cost for grid-scale commercial applications. The agencies released a joint Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for the "Foundational Program to Advance Cell Efficiency" on April 8, 2011, to identify and fund solar device physics and PV technology research and development.
This collaborative effort is one of four programs in the SunShot Initiative recently announced by Energy Secretary Steven Chu. The SunShot Initiative aims to make solar energy technologies cost-competitive with other forms of energy by reducing the cost of solar energy systems by about 75 percent before 2020. Reducing the total installed cost for utility-scale solar electricity to roughly $1 per watt will result in rapid, large-scale adoption of solar electricity across the country. Reaching this goal will re-establish American technological leadership, improve the nation's energy security, and strengthen U.S. economic competitiveness in the global clean energy race.
SunShot's Foundational Program to Advance Cell Efficiency addresses the technical foundations of PV by taking advantage of the complementary roles of NSF and DOE. NSF's mission to support basic research and educate the next generation of engineers and scientists "feeds the pipeline" to DOE's applied research and later-stage development that matures technologies toward U.S. economic impact.
"NSF aims to create breakthroughs for sustainable energy through its investment in basic research," said Robert Trew, director of the NSF Division of Electronic, Communications, and Cyber Systems (ECCS). "We hope this collaboration with DOE will bring America significantly closer to a sustainable energy future."
-Cecile J. Gonzalez, NSF-
About National Science Foundation
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2010, its budget is about $6.9 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives over 45,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes over 11,500 new funding awards. NSF also awards over $400 million in professional and service contracts yearly.
For more information, please click here
DOE, (202) 586-4940
Division of Electrical, Communications,
and Cyber Systems (ECCS)
Program for Energy, Power,
and Adaptive Systems (EPAS)
DOE Office of Energy
Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Solar Energy Technologies Program (SETP)
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