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
NGPV Pamphlet Pg 1.png

(Click to download the PDF.)

Spring 2020 Virtual IAB Meeting Successfully Held
Thank you to the IAB for working with us and attending our Spring 2020 virtual IAB meeting! Things went off without a hitch and a recording of the meeting is available for members along with minutes and presentation documents. We have scheduled our next virtual IAB meeting for October 20, 2020 and will post more information as we approach that date.
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.
NGPV elects new IAB Chair and Vice Chair 
Thank you to Mandar Sunthankar and Raju Jairam on completing their terms as IAB Chair and Vice Chair. Mandar and Raju have been instrumental members of our IAB since the Center's founding and have helped shape the IAB and Center's trajectory for many years. Thank you once again!
Taking over as Chair and Vice Chair are Gang Xiong of First Solar and Guillaume Gelinas of 5N Plus, respectively. We are already working hard with the new IAB leadership and look forward to the next 2 years with them in these roles!
Improving Solar Reliability at CSU
In this video, Kurt Barth discusses some of the recent advancements in the solar industry and the research being done at Colorado State.
"If you think about where all our energy comes from, the energy that we have ultimately came from the sun.. we're just taking a long time to harvest that in the case of fossil fuels. But why do that? Let's eliminate the middleman and just take the sun directly as it is and turn that right into electricity."
Jim Sites receives IEEE Cherry Award
Congratulations to NGPV team member Prof. Jim Sites on being awarded the 2020 IEEE William R. Cherry Award. This award, one of the most significant in the PV industry, is to recognize an individual engineer or scientist who has devoted a part of their professional life to the advancement of the science and technology of photovoltaic energy conversion. Congratulations from all of us, Jim!
More information can be found here at the IEEE website.

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

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UT Austin Makerspace (Fall 2018 IAB Meeting)