Solar America Initiative set to fund R&D
March 06, 2006
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a Notice of Program Interest (NOPI) to advance the new Solar America Initiative. During his State of the Union address, President Bush announced an ambitious plan to spur technological development of renewable energy resources and a key element of this effort is the Solar America Initiative (SAI). The SAI will work to make solar energy cost-competitive with other electricity sources by 2015, supporting our nation's energy independence. The SAI will focus primarily on photovoltaic (PV) systems, which convert sunlight directly into electrical current that can be used on site or transmitted to other users through the grid.
The NOPI provides industry, universities, and other potential implementers with an opportunity to provide early input to planning for the Solar America Initiative. They are requested to provide ideas on critical planning topics, including program phasing, technology improvement opportunities, and procurement strategy. Information obtained as a result of this NOPI is meant to be used by the government on a non-attribution basis for program strategy and procurement planning.
This NOPI has the potential to lead to new funding opportunities for research and development on new solar component technologies, manufacturing processes for components and integrated PV system designs that have the best chance at making PV-generated electricity cost-competitive by the 2015 goal. DOE will also develop a technology acceptance strategy to address marketplace barriers and challenges such as net metering, interconnection standards, and system financing.
In April, DOE will convene a Technical Exchange Meeting to facilitate contributions to planning for the R&D elements of the SAI. This meeting will be open to organizations on a space-limited basis, and an announcement for the meeting will be posted on FedBizOpps.
For more details on this announcement, please visit the Solar Technologies Program website.