Our Mission 

The Center for Next Generation Photovoltaics is part of the US National Science Foundation (NSF) Industry/University Cooperative Research Centers (I/UCRC) program.  The vision and long-term goal of the Center is to help establish photovoltaic (PV) electricity as a major source of energy in the United States and the world.  The Center is composed of an advisory board of industry and government partners that funds and directs cutting edge academic research in four areas:

 

(1) PV Materials/Devices/Manufacturing

(2) Balance of Systems and PV Implementation

(3) PV Integration with Storage and Electric Vehicles

(4) Education and Societal Impact of PV

 

Want to be part of the team?  See how to join now.

Global Photovoltaics Impact

By the end of 2016, the global installed solar PV capacity reached 305 GW which provided about 320 TWh/yr of electrical energy. This is equivalent to 0.15% of global energy consumption. The growth of the PV industry has been staggering. The global solar PV capacity was only 50 GW in 2010, and in 2000 it was a meager 4 GW. In 2016 alone, the global solar PV capacity rose by 50% due to new installations in China and the US. The PV industry is a $100 billion industry that is expected to continue to grow. By 2030, the total global PV capacity could reach 10 TW, generating about 5% of the anticipated global consumption of energy in 2030. 

 

To reach PV deployment of this magnitude, there are many challenge that must be overcome: (1) the total cost of PV systems must be reduced  while simultaneously increasing energy conversion efficiency, reliability and lifetime, (2) the capacity to cost-effectively manufacture solar cells and balance of systems components must be significantly increased, (3) methods to integrate PV into the utility grid must continue to improve to ensure affordable and reliable electricity, (4) transportation and building heating and cooling must be increasingly electrified and (5) technologies must be improved for energy storage, catalyzed chemicals and fuels production, and water purification. The Industry/University Cooperative Research Center for Next Generation Photovoltaics is addressing all of these key technological challenges to help make photovoltaic electricity a major source of energy in the world.

Benefits of  I/UCRC Membership  
  • Access to more than 8:1 Leveraged Research Funding

  • Organizational Exposure Channel and Commercialization Partners

  • Build Relationships with Future Industry Partners

  • Early Recruitment of Future Employees

  • Technology Transfer and Commercialization Assistance

A Quick Center Overview
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(Click to download the PDF.)

CSU sets CdTe efficiency mark
As reported at our recent IAB meeting, Dr. Sampath's group from Colorado State University reported CdTe solar cell with an efficiency of 20.14%. The reported efficiency is the highest among the academia and research institutions. The fabrication and characterization details of solar cell with 20.14% efficiency was presented by Dr. Tushar Shimpi to IAB members in the poster session.
Congratulations, team!
Spring 2020 IAB Meeting Canceled
Given the current state of COVID-19 and with everyone’s health in mind, we have taken the decision to cancel the NGPV Spring IAB meeting previously scheduled for April 21 in Austin, TX.  We will have more details going forward regarding project updates and other items that would typically be covered at the meeting.
2020 American-Made Solar Prize
Congratulations to Dr. Jennie Yoshimoto and Terra Solar on being selected as one of the 20 winners nationwide in the first stage of the 2020 American-Made Solar Prize. The American-Made Solar Prize is a three-stage, $3 million dollar competition, designed by the U.S. Department of Energy to promote innovation in the solar industry in the United States. Terra Solar's do-it-yourself (DIY) solar energy assembly kit claimed the $50,000 prize and earned a spot in the second stage of the competition.

Jennie is a TAMU alumna and her project application received support from TAMU Co-Director Robert Balog.
Robert Balog elected to the National Academy of Inventors (NAI)
Congratulation to our Texas A&M site Co-Director, Robert Balog, on being elected into the August 2019 class of the NAI! Robert joins a group of 53 other inventors who are being recognized for their achievements and history of patenting new technologies. A full list can be seen on the NAI's website here.
 
Congrats once again, Robert!
Cost of solar plus storage continues to fall
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power finalized a landmark deal with 8minute Solar for a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement set at under 2 cents per kilowatt/hour, a new record. This deal represented the lowest price offered in the U.S. and became the largest solar plus storage project in American history as well. This particular purchase will provide LA with about 7% of its energy needs and bring their renewable energy total to nearly 40% of their usage. The project is underway with the first phase set to come on board in 2022 while full operations are complete in 2023.

© 2013 by Center for Next Generation Photovoltaics. All rights reserved.           

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