EERE Network News
March 09, 2005
News and Events
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced on March 4th the availability of $14.3 million in grants for value- added agriculture business ventures, with priority given to grant applications that dedicate at least 51 percent of the project costs to biomass energy.
Leaders from the solar power industry have launched a new group, called "Americans for Solar Power - PV Manufacturers Alliance." The alliance is dedicated to helping the United States achieve an annual 1-gigawatt market for distributed solar power by 2010.
The Las Vegas Water District has contracted with PowerLight Corporation for the installation of a 3.1-megawatt solar power project at four sites in and around Las Vegas, Nevada. PowerLight recently contributed to the world's largest solar photovoltaic project, a 10-megawatt project in Bavaria.
Can your hat recharge your cell phone? Solar photovoltaic devices are already incorporated into lightweight, flexible plastics, but researchers are working to also incorporate them into textiles and lightweight titanium foils. The foils would be ideal for solar-powered high-altitude aircraft.
Steve Fossett's record-breaking solo flight around the world was possible because of advanced aerodynamics and lightweight graphite and epoxy materials. An around-the-world flight using only solar power, however, remains at least four years off.
It may lack the excitement of the World Cup, but the "Efficiency Challenge 2004"—a competition to create energy-efficient power supplies—drew entries from companies and universities around the world. The winners were announced on March 7th.
The Western Area Power Administration's Energy Services Web site offers no-cost technical assistance, an equipment loan program, calculators, links, and other resources on energy efficiency and renewable energy.
With recent crude oil prices exceeding $50 per barrel, DOE's Energy Information Administration (EIA) now expects oil prices to average $48.70 in the first quarter of 2004. As a result, regular gasoline is expected to average $2.10 per gallon during the summer driving season.