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  • Wednesday, January 23, 2013


    Energy Department Announces $12 Million to Bring Cost-Competitive Solar Technologies from Lab to Market

    January 16, 2013 (U.S. Department of Energy)

    “As part of the Energy Department's SunShot Incubator Program...$12 million [will be available] to accelerate solar energy innovation that reduces manufacturing, installation, and permitting costs for American homes, businesses, and utilities. This new funding opportunity expands on previous Solar Incubator rounds to support both hardware efficiency and soft cost reduction goals, while helping companies transition lab-scale ideas to prototype phases or move early-scale projects to commercial launch.

    “The Energy Department's SunShot Incubator Program helps launch startups and new business units…Since 2007, the program has helped launch more than 50 American small [solar] businesses, which have since attracted more than $1.7 billion in follow-on private sector investments…[and] created more than 750 jobs across the U.S. solar energy industry…In 2011, the Department broadened the scope of [the SunShot Incubator] program to include projects that address soft or non-hardware costs such as installation, permitting, interconnection, and inspection, which can amount to up to 40% of the total cost of solar installation…”

    “Divided into two areas—solar hardware and soft costs—this round of Incubator funding…[offers]…Up to $500,000 to help speed the transition of a proof-of-concept technology to the early-stage functional prototype stage…Up to $1 million to accelerate the transition of an early-stage functional prototype to a full-size prototype that could later be manufactured…Up to $4 million to develop efficient manufacturing processes and equipment to move technology from a full-size prototype to pilot-scale production…

    “…[For] addressing soft cost reduction goals…Up to $500,000 to accelerate the transition of a proof-of-concept business plan or early stage solutions to early customer trials…[and] Up to $2 million to drive full commercialization of innovative technologies that reduce solar deployment soft costs…”


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