According to a new report released by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), soft costs accounted for 63.5% of total costs of residential solar installations, 56.7% for small commercial systems ( Balance-of-System (Soft) Costs for U.S. Photovoltaic Systems, Using a Bottom-Up Approach and Installer Survey, broke down soft costs into the following categories: sales tax, supply chain costs, installer/developer profit, indirect corporate costs, transaction costs, customer acquisition, permit fee, PII labor, and installation labor.
It’s just one energy sector watcher weighing in, but Lux Research does have pretty good credentials, so we’ll run with it, leading with their headline: “Solar to Become Competitive with Natural Gas by 2025.”
With the help of a new method called "dual-electrode photoelectrochemistry," University of Oregon scientists have provided new insight into how solar water-splitting cells work. An important and overlooked parameter, they report, is the ion-permeability of electrocatalysts used in water-splitting devices.
When you open a distillery in sunny Hawaii, it should be
Nokero has made a bit of a name for itself in marketing and selling environmentally friendly solar-based technologies such as solar lights and solar battery chargers. It is now introducing what it says is the most affordable solar light bulb in the world, and it is aimed at emerging markets.
Scientists have created a heat-resistant thermal emitter that could significantly improve the efficiency of solar cells. The novel component is designed to convert heat from the sun into infrared light, which can than be absorbed by solar cells to make electricity – a technology known as thermophotovoltaics.
An era of nighttime solar power is dawning in the U.S.
In a high-profile critique of utility-scale renewable energy, Robert Bryce wrote in the New York Times in 2011 that energy sources like sunlight and wind “(require) vast amounts of natural resources – most notably, land.”
Oregon Tech thinks it’s back on track with its ambitious goal of becoming the first university in North America to generate all of the electrical power it requires – from renewable sources, no less.
Ken Salazar was about “smart from the start.” Sally Jewell, his successor as head of the U.S. Department of the Interior, appears to be claiming “landscape-level approach” as her favorite phrase when it comes to large-scale renewable energy development in the West.Oba
Cheaper by the minute: That seems to be the story with solar photovoltaics in the United States these days.
Get ready to throw all of your assumptions about how to make a battery right out the window. Scientists at the University of Maryland are working on a powerful new battery that could help reduce hazardous waste usually associated with power storage. The main ingredient? Wood.
Americans used less energy in 2012 than they did in 2011, and the energy they did use was more likely to come from cleaner sources than it used to, as natural gas, solar and wind made gains and coal declined.
Recently, I’ve become obsessed with tiny houses. I love how affordable, efficient, and portable they can be, not to mention how they force us to eliminate all but the most essential personal possessions.
Two NASA spacecraft have provided the most comprehensive movie ever of a mysterious process at the heart of all explosions on the sun: magnetic reconnection. Magnetic reconnection happens when magnetic field lines come together, break apart and then exchange partners, snapping into new positions and releasing a jolt of magnetic energy.
Could you live in a single room house? I’m guessing more than one of us has spent time in a tiny apartment, but we sure didn’t like it. The idea of building a one-room house seems archaic and claustrophobic, but maybe that’s because we’re looking at the idea of rooms all wrong.
Besides EADS, another company working in the development space for more sustainable aircraft is PC-Aero. Best known for the Elektra One all-electric aircraft, they have now set their sights on an even more ambitious undertaking: a two-engine, six seat all electric aircraft with solar panels called the Elektro E6.
In the wake of the sobering news that atmospheric carbon dioxide is now at its highest level in at least three million years, an important advance in the race to develop carbon-neutral renewable energy sources has been achieved.
Solar Impulse embarked this morning on its latest journey, departing the San Francisco Bay Area at dawn, heading toward Phoenix on the first leg of a trip that if all goes well will land the sun-powered airplane in New York City around the Fourth of July.
Researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have managed to design a low-cost, long-life battery that could enable solar and wind energy to become major suppliers to the electrical grid.