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January 1, 2017

Our most recent IAB Quarterly Update was on January 25, 2017
 

Prior to our next IAB meeting in April, we held our Quarterly Update on January 25, 2017. The web-based meeting featured a Center update from our directors followed by 10-15 minute long presentations from our researchers on all active projects. A recording of the meeting is available on the member's site.

January 26, 2017

Carey King's Distinguished Lecture Series talk
 
Dr. Carey King, the Assistant Director of the UT Austin Energy Institute gave a talk entitled, "The Full Cost of Electricity (FCe-)." The talk focused on Dr. King and his team's efforts to employ a holistic approach to thoroughly examine the key factors affecting the total system cost of generating and delivering electricity. A video of the talk is available here on our YouTube channel.
February 22, 2017
Distinguished Lecture Series: Charlie Gay (DOE)
 
Our most recent speaker within our Distinguished Lecture series was Dr. Charlie Gay, the Director of the Sunshot Initiative and the Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) within the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Dr. Gay gave a talk that covered the range of opportunities associated with changes in energy supply in developed and developing economies. The talk also reviewed the history of solar and discussed the key role of professionals in communicating a vision for the future.
 
If you were unable to attend, we have a video available on our YouTube channel here.
January 25, 2017
Distinguished Lecture Series talk on 3/07/17
 
Dr. Angus Rockett, the Department Head of the Colorado School of Mines Metallurgical and Materials Engineering department, gave a talk entitled, "What’s Up with Chalcopyrite Solar Cells?" Angus' talk examined the current status of chalcopyrite solar cells and considered their efficiency and reliability as well as the prospects for future improvement and growth. A video of the talk is on our YouTube page.
March 9, 2017
Peter Muhoro: Distinguished Lecture Series talk (3/21/17)
 
Dr. Peter Muhoro, the Chief Strategy Officer for Pedernales Electric Cooperative (PEC), gave a talk entitled, "The Electric Cooperative Model: The PEC Story & the Future of the Utility Industry." Peter provided an overview of the concept of electric cooperatives as a whole with an occasional focus on the successes of PEC in particular. He touched on topics such as how do electric cooperatives compare with other utilities, what sort of grid modernization is necessary for them to operate effectively and how the financials of community solar and other similar activities look. The YouTube recording is available here
April 1, 2017
Welcome to our new members: Army Research Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory and JEOL!
 
We are thrilled to welcome three new members to the Center! ARL will work directly with research teams at both Texas A&M and UT Austin. This continues a strong tradition of the Center working with the United States military. The military has a strong commitment to using renewable energy in the future and is relying in part on our Center to help them reach these goals. The Center has worked with the Naval Postgraduate School, the Office of Naval Research and the Air Force Research Laboratory as well.
The team at Colorado State has been working with NREL to finalize the details of their research collaboration for some time and are looking forward to beginning their research. As a part of NREL and DOE's DuraMAT project, researchers at CSU will work on multiple projects studying PV durability.
Lastly, but certainly not least, JEOL will be partnering with the team at Texas A&M Central Texas on a new project that is focused on the characterization of photovoltaic materials.
Welcome once again to our new members!
April 12, 2017
Spring 2017 IAB meeting was held at UT Austin
 

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend our IAB Meeting at UT Austin on April 18, 2017! Photos from the event are available on our Facebook page. Our next meeting will take place at Texas A&M's campus on October 17-18, 2017 and we hope to see you all there!

April 19, 2017

Dana Harmon and Erik Funkhouse Talk
 
On May 2, 2017, Dana Harmon and Erik Funkhouser gave a talk entitled, "Energy Poverty: Introduction and Landscape Analysis." Energy poverty describes a condition faced by many Americans in which the personal cost of consumption needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle creates a significant or unnecessary economic burden. A recording of the talk is available here. Thanks once again to Dana and Erik!

May 4, 2017

Distinguished Lecutre series Tribal Lands PV Talk
 
A video of Berlyn Hubler's talk, "Challenges and Potential of Solar PV on Tribal Lands," is now available on our YouTube channel. 
May 22, 2017
Varun Rai Distinguished Lecture Series talk
 
If you didn't get a chance to view Varun Rai's talk, "Hard Science of Soft Costs: Reducing Solar Costs and Accelerating Adoption," the video is up on our YouTube channel. The talk covers both the demand and supply side of the market and focuses on customer adoption decision-making process amongst other things.  
June 29, 2017
Sarah Kurtz Distinguished Lecture Series talk
 
If you missed the talk that NREL's Sarah Kurtz gave recently, "A New Era for Solar Brings New Research Topics," a video is now available on our YouTube channel.
 
Dr. Kurtz discussed the new and exciting avenues of research that are opening up in photovoltaics.
June 29, 2017
Bethany Frew's talk now available
 
If you missed Bethany's talk, "Renewable Energy: Alternatives No More," we have it up on our Youtube channel! The talk touches on the importance of the grid accommodating the new and varied sources of energy that come from variable generation.
July 3, 2017
Recent Distinguished Lecture Series talks
 
If you missed Bethany Frew, Varun Rai or Sarah Kurtz' lectures, we have them all up on on YouTube channel! Check out these and others here.
July 10, 2017
Vikas Reddy also awarded
 

Congrats are also in order for Vikas Reddy who was a third place winner for his poster, "CuInSe2 Nanocrystal Solar Cells on Paper," in the Student Poster Awards at the 2017FLEX Conference.

July 9, 2017

Amit Munshi wins Best Student Paper
 

Congratulations to Amit Munshi on being awarded with a Best Student Paper Award at the 44th edition of the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference! Amit worked on Center projects throughout his entire PhD and upon his graduation has continued on with Dr. Sampath's group as a Postdoctoral researcher.

His paper, "Polycrystalline CdSeTe/CdTe Absorber Cells with 28 mA/cm2 Short-Circuit Current," discussed new efficiency records achieved for a CdSeTe/CdTe solar cell. The team demonstrated efficiency of >19.0%. 

July 9, 2017

Distinguished Lecture Series update
 
Wyatt Metzger, a Principal Scientist at NREL, gave our most recent talk entitled, "Material Challenges in CdTe Photovoltaics." The talk reviewed recent work to understand and improve CdTe properties using single crystals, varying grain size, stoichiometry, different doping approaches, advanced characterization, and modeling. Slides of the talk are available here.
September 1, 2017
Director and alum recipients of new Sunshot Awards

Deputy Director Kurt Barth and Center alum Jason Kephart were amongst the new grant awardees from DOE's Sunshot Initiative. Kurt and Jason made up the two awardees from Colorado State University. Their projects are entitled, "Advanced Module Architecture for Reduced Costs, High Durability and Significantly Improved Manufacturability" and "High Lifetime and Mobility Cadmium Telluride Alloys by Co-sublimation." Congratulations to the team at CSU!

A full list of the funded projects can be found here.

September 14, 2017

Jason Kephart accepts position at Center member First Solar

Jason, whose work at Colorado State University recently lead to an award for their team from the Sunshot program, joins First Solar as a Development Engineer. It's always especially exciting when our alumni or alumna move on to join our members. Congratulations, Jason!

October 10, 2017

Thank you Texas A&M for hosting our Fall 2017 IAB Meeting!
 

Our recent IAB meeting was held October 17-18, 2017 at the Memorial Student Center at TAMU. We posted a few photos of the meeting on our Facebook page and Minutes and Meeting Outcomes will be provided to the IAB.

 

Our next meeting will be held in Fort Collins, CO at CSU on April 17, 2018. Looking forward to another successful meeting next year! 

October 20, 2017

10/3/17 Distinguished Lecture Series talk
 
Scott Nguyen, Founder and Executive Director of 1PlanetSol, gave a talk on the differing income levels of the recipients of Austin Energy's Solar Incentive Program. The talk presented results of their recent study that analyzed the income distribution of the program during the period of 2004 and April 2017.  
 
If you missed the talk, we have posted a video on our Youtube channel. [Click here]
October 6, 2017
Center research featured in the new issue of CEP Magazine
 

The new issue of CEP Magazine features a story on the work being done by researchers at UT Austin on paper photovoltaics. Congratulations to our Center Director, Brian Korgel, and one of our graduate students, Vikas Reddy, on having your work highlighted!

You can read it in full here.

August 7, 2017

Welcome to our newest member, Advanced Solar Power
 

The team at ASP will collaborate with our researchers from Colorado State University. Welcome, ASP!

September 18, 2017

Congratulations to Dr. Vikas Reddy Voggu!
 

Vikas will begin working at Intel's Portland office as a PTD Module and Integration Device Yield Engineer in February 2018. Congrats, Vikas!

December 12, 2017

We're looking for teachers!
 

The Center is looking to host a teacher this summer to spend over 2 months working with the researchers from the Center. This Research  Experiences for Teachers (RET) program will be operated in conjunction with the new MRSEC at UT Austin. We are primarily interested K-5 teachers but please feel free to submit an application even if this doesn't apply to you! To learn more and submit an application, please visit this website.

November 16, 2017

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