Solar Power World and “State of Solar” for U.S. 2015

Crash course in U.S. solar

We like to share good information about solar from other sources and this is a great article with good information about the solar market in the U.S. today. Residential and commercial solar installations have increased as costs have gone down, and the number of solar panel installations has increased dramatically as a result. It’s a good time to get into the market.

Atlanta-Buildings2a

SolarWindow Enters into Third Phase…

SolarWindow Enters into Third Phase of Technology Development Agreement with U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL)

02 Mar 2016
SolarWindow Technologies, Inc., the leading developer of first-of-its-kind transparent electricity-generating coatings for glass and flexible plastics, announced that it has entered into Phase III of its Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The primary development goal of the Agreement is the commercialization of SolarWindow products.
NREL is recognized as one of the most respected and advanced solar-photovoltaic research institutions in the world. NREL scientists have been working side-by-side with SolarWindow Principal Scientist, Dr. Scott R. Hammond during the development of SolarWindow transparent electricity-generating coatings. SolarWindow is initially targeting the five million tall towers and commercial buildings in the United States, which consume almost 40% of the electrical energy generated.
“The prospect of skyscrapers generating electricity from see-through window products is very exciting,” said Dr. Maikel van Hest, a Senior Scientist in the Thin Film and Processing Group within the National Center for Photovoltaics at NREL. “Through our CRADA, we have been able to develop and test this technology using some of the world’s most advanced state of the art equipment. As a result, SolarWindow and NREL have advanced the technology by enhancing scale, efficiency and reliability.”
Under the terms of the Agreement, SolarWindow and NREL will continue to work jointly to enhance product performance, increase scale, and improve reliability; and develop new features and obtain important performance certifications required for a commercial rollout.
In addition, the team will focus on various SolarWindow product-specific goals, including:
  • Large scale window fabrication
  • Interconnection development for easy ‘plug-n-play’ on-site installation
  • Advanced performance measurement and modeling of SolarWindow when installed in various building types and geographies
  • SolarWindow performance under varying artificial and natural light conditions
  • SolarWindow can provide a one-year financial payback while producing 50-times greater energy than rooftop solar when modeled for a 50-story building, according to the company’s independent validation. For the same building, SolarWindow shows 15-times the environmental benefit of rooftop solar by avoiding 2.2 million miles of equivalent carbon dioxide emissions produced by vehicles, according to the company’s independently validated Power & Financial Model.
“With this CRADA extension in place, we’re one step closer to launching what is possibly the single greatest breakthrough technology in clean energy to help us overcome our dependence on fossil fuels,” said John A. Conklin, President and CEO of SolarWindow. “Keeping in mind that commercial buildings consume almost 40 percent of America’s electricity, our goal is to put a solid dent in reducing carbon emissions and offsetting a building carbon footprint while providing customers with clean electricity-generating solutions that make economic sense.”
SolarWindow Technologies, Inc.
Kelly Provence_Solairgen

NABCEP Profile Interview

Kelly Provence is one of a very small number of people who holds three NABCEP Certifications: PV Solar Installer, Solar Thermal Installer and PV Technical Sales. Kelly is the owner of Solairgen School of Solar Technology located in Dahlonega, Georgia. Solairgen is a training company which offers a complete program for electric solar panel installers and PV technical salespeople. Kelly is also an IREC/ISPQ Certified Master Trainer and a licensed master electrician.

In a personal interview, Kelly said, “I have always been an environmentalist, so in the late 1990s I felt it was time to take a serious look at my own ecological values, so I began incorporating PV installations into my electrical business.

“In 2002, I began focusing my efforts solely on PV, installing mainly off-grid and battery back-up systems. I branched out into solar thermal installations from there and sought certification in that area. Getting my NABCEP PV and Solar Thermal Installer certifications definitely opened doors for me; I received multiple job offers because of my NABCEP Certifications.

“After three years volunteering as a Director with the Georgia Solar Energy Association (GSEA), lobbying state and federal politicians on environmental issues, I realized there was a need for competent installation training, and there was no training facility in Georgia.

“It became clear that the solar installation industry needed a way to recognize experienced installers, and I shared NABCEP’s core purpose of maintaining high industry standards. I sat for my first certification, NABCEP PV Installer exam, and since then I have consistently advocated for NABCEP Certifications to all my students.

“In 2005 I transitioned the company to solar training exclusively, and it’s now my full time occupation. Approximately 50% of the people installing in the state have taken Solairgen training, and many of them have gone on to become NABCEP certified professionals. Today, many entities in the state, such as Georgia Electrical Membership Companies (EMCs), recommend or require installations to be performed by NABCEP certified contractors.

“My NABCEP Certifications tell customers I have achieved high-level skills, and lets them know I didn’t get into this yesterday. NABCEP Certification distinguishes individuals within the industry.

“I went for the PV Technical Sales Rep certification because students needed to be confident I have expertise in the subject I’m teaching, and I needed to know what the test was like.

“My customers respond positively because they understand NABCEP is the best example of self-regulation within the industry. I support it 100%. My students know what NABCEP Certification means to their careers; most are on track to become NABCEP Certified Installers or PV Technical Sales Reps.

“I will definitely be re-certifying when the time to do so comes up.”