Suniva, Radiance Solar and Georgia Tech Research Institute Awarded “SunShot” Grant from U.S. Department of EnergyGeorgia-based project team receives $2.8 Million contract for development of next-generation solar PV system design
NORCROSS, GA – September 8, 2011 – Suniva, Inc., a U.S. manufacturer of high-efficiency monocrystalline silicon solar cells and modules, today announced that it is a key member of a team that has been awarded a $2.8 million U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) contract to develop a commercially-ready, next generation solar photovoltaic (PV) balance of system (BOS) design. The grant is part of the DOE’s SunShot Initiative, which is focused on accelerating the development of cost-competitive solar technologies.
The project is led by the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), in collaboration with Suniva, Inc. and Radiance Solar. The project team also includes faculty and students from Georgia Tech’s College of Architecture, School of Mechanical Engineering and Center for Biologically Inspired Design. The Rocky Mountain Institute, VClear, Georgia Aerospace and Intertek are also part of the team.
To make solar energy competitive with the wholesale rate of electricity without additional subsidies, BOS costs must be reduced. GTRI, Suniva and Radiance Solar have partnered to find new ways to reduce extreme balance of system costs through ground and roof mount innovations. This project, titled “SIMPLE BoS” (Solar, Installation, Mounting, Production, Labor and Equipment) will develop new module designs, integration, materials, and wire management methods while also limiting contingencies, and will reduce racking/mounting hardware costs along with associated labor costs by fifty percent of industry best practice. Currently, BOS accounts for more than 40 percent of the total installed cost of solar energy systems.
“The Department of Energy has outlined an ambitious plan to help make solar energy more competitive, without requiring long term subsidies. A key component of this is to reduce the costs associated with the balance of systems cost, such as grounding and mounting systems. We’re looking forward to working with Radiance and Georgia Tech to solve these challenges,” said Anthony Coker, Sr. Director Market & Solutions Development, Suniva. “Our selection for the SunShot initiative is further validation for Suniva’s market leadership in making high quality PV affordable to bring the solar industry closer to grid parity.”
The SunShot Initiative seeks to make solar energy systems more cost-competitive, without long-term subsidies, by reducing the cost of these systems about 75 percent by the end of the decade. The achievement of the SunShot Initiative goals will encourage rapid, widespread adoption of solar energy systems across the United States.
About Radiance Solar
Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Radiance Solar LLC designs, develops and installs solar energy systems for residential, commercial, and utility customers throughout the US. Radiance Solar’s mission is to aggressively lower solar installed costs through value engineering and innovative construction techniques to bring reliable, affordable solar within reach of every electricity user.
Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI)
Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI®) is a part of the Georgia Institute of Technology, which is one of the nation’s top research universities, distinguished by its commitment to improving the human condition through advanced science and technology. Georgia Tech Research Institute’s 1,600 employees put their science and engineering expertise to use solving some of the toughest problems facing, government and industry across the nation and around the globe.
Based in metro-Atlanta, GA, Suniva® manufactures high-efficiency monocrystalline silicon solar cells and high-power solar modules using patented low-cost techniques. Led by an internationally regarded team of business executives and photovoltaic scientists, the Company leverages exclusive licenses to critical patents and patent-pending intellectual property developed by founder and CTO Dr. Ajeet Rohatgi at the Georgia Institute of Technology’s University Center of Excellence for Photovoltaic Research, which is funded by the Department of Energy. Suniva sells its advanced solar cells and modules worldwide and is dedicated to making solar generated electricity cost competitive with fossil fuels. For additional information on how Suniva is making solar more sensible in the global market, please visit www.suniva.com.