Apple is taking on its “most ambitious project ever” and its not a phone, some new wearable gadget, or a even a TV. Instead, Apple is going to cover 1,300 acres of California countryside in electricity-generating solar panels. Continue Reading »
Solar isn’t just the way to go for our power needs, but it’s the way to go for jobs as well. The solar power jobs sector grew 20 times faster than any other sector, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In fact, the number of solar jobs has surpassed the number of coal mining jobs. This is a hopeful sign for both alternative energy and job growth.
Toronto’s Illan Kramer, Inventor of Spray-on Solar
Illan Kramer, a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Toronto, and IBM Canada’s Research and Development Center has invented a new way to spray solar cells onto flexible surfaces using minuscule light-sensitive materials known as colloidal quantum dots (CQDs)—a major step toward making spray-on solar cells easy and cheap to manufacture.
“My dream is that one day you’ll have two technicians with Ghostbusters backpacks come to your house and spray your roof,” says Kramer.
Costs for home energy storage are dropping fast.
A few years ago, most people didn’t have any idea the home solar PV market would grow so fast. But it has, and there’s no stopping its momentum now. Similarly, there aren’t many people that realize how fast the home storage market is going to grow.
A battery module built at Aquion’s plant in Pennsylvania.
A new kind of battery that stores energy from solar and wind power cheaply and cleanly has hit the market. It is by far the cheapest of a new generation of large, long-lived batteries that could make it possible to rely heavily on intermittent, renewable energy sources.
We all want to find an alternative to fossil fuels as soon as possible. The most viable answer to the planet’s energy needs is visible to us any time we look upward. The amount of solar energy that hits just 1 square mile of this planet over the course of a year is equal to 4 million barrels of oil, and the energy that hits the Earth in a mere 40 minutes can fuel all of humanity’s energy needs for a year. Isn’t that incredible? (Infographic)
How electrolysis could produce hydrogen as a way to store renewable energy.
There isn’t a cost-effective way to store large-scale solar energy. But researchers at Stanford have developed a solution by using electrolysis to turn tanks of water and hydrogen into batteries. During the day, electricity from solar cells could be used to break apart water into hydrogen and oxygen. Recombining these gases would generate electricity for use at night.
Researchers at Ohio State University have created a new hybrid device that can act both as a solar cell and as a battery storing that energy.
Scientists, entrepreneurs and government leaders are pushing to develop cheap, clean energy as the world seeks out alternatives to fossil fuels.
Minnesota to launch solar highways.
Solar arrays could soon be seen along the public rights-of-way that line the state’s highway in Minnesota. The Minnesota Department of Transportation has released a request for proposal (RFP) accepting bids to build and manage solar arrays, which would provide the state’s grid a new and reliable source of clean energy for at least 20 years.
Installing solar panels.
Anyone with enough roof space will be leaving the grid within the decade for solar power. And in most cases they won’t be leaving just one grid, they will be leaving two. That’s because solar is going to become, to put a new spin on an old phrase, “too cheap to have a meter”. It just won’t be worth paying daily service charges to have a grid supplied meter and grid access.
The Knox home has geothermal loops buried under the backyard.
Andrew Know, manager of Naval Facilities Energy Initiatives, decided to go “net zero” on his home in Washington, D.C. What Knox got was a true zero-energy home, done right on a budget.
Renewable energy shows an average price decline over the last 5 years of 78% for utility scale solar and 58% for wind.
Lazard, an asset management firm, has a fascinating new analysis of renewable and other energy prices out. There are a huge number of insights in this, from an outside analyst whose primary interest is financial.