Author Archives: GP

Sunstock Solar Festival Mixing Solar Power with Music and Art

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Sunstock Solar Festival is the first completely solar-powered event of its kind and is lighting the way for music and the environment this summer. The festival, which will take place on June 18 at the Autry in Griffith Park, is the first solar powered event of its kind. The event will feature some of the hottest local bands, but it’s also for a good cause. Sunstock Solar Festival will benefit Kids Cancer Connection, a local charity, and help create awareness for alternative energy sources and eco-friendly practices in the music industry.

“Music has a way of uplifting, re-energizing and inspiring people. If we can create a positive experience that is also pointed towards a cause and a purpose, we can be more effective and we can be re-energized,” said Sunstock Founder, Skylar Funk. “We come together not just to party and listen to music, but because we know that there has to be a change and we want to be part of the solution. “People can come get involved with these non-profits, or even if they just buy a ticket, they are supporting a good cause,” he added.

Sunstock Solar Festival will run all evening, entirely on solar energy, creating a brilliant atmosphere to enjoy great music and celebrate with the community. Funk and his band Trapdoor Social started doing solar-powered concerts in 2015 and are creating Sunstock Solar Festival in order to celebrate solar as a solution, create a positive space for the sustainability movement to come together, and curate great art and music for the Los Angeles community. The festival, which is produced in collaboration with Odd Nights at the Autry, is open to all ages and will include visual artists, activities for kids, food trucks, a 21+ bar and vendors from the area’s craft culture. All proceeds from the event will help fund a solar roof installed by Sunstock partner, GRID Alternatives, for Kids Cancer Connection.

With an over-arching goal of uniting the community around sustainable solutions, Sunstock Solar Festival has teamed up with local and national organizations working to reduce our country’s carbon footprint and protect the health of future generations. Partners include the longstanding environmental grassroots organization Sierra Club, as well as Food & Water Watch, SoCal 350, Courage Campaign, GRID Alternatives, Climate Hawks Vote, and Eastside Sol.

Sunstock’s musical lineup will include top indie and alternative acts from around the region. Early bird tickets are now available through Eventbrite for $15.00. The festival will be located in a secluded corner of Griffith Park at the Autry Museum of the American West, 4700 Western Heritage Way. A bike valet and plenty of free parking will be available in the Los Angeles Zoo parking lot.

About Sunstock Solar Festival:
Doors open at 4PM and music goes live at 5PM. Visit sunstocksolarfestival.com for updated information on the lineup and amenities. For more information on Sunstock Founder, Skylar Funk and band Trapdoor Social, visit trapdoorsocial.com.

Alta Devices Achieves 31.6% Solar Energy Efficiency Record

New Solar Cell Enables Aircraft Designers to Shed Substantial Weight and Increase Utility of These Platforms.

Alta Devices Flexible Solar Cell

SUNNYVALE, CA – April 27, 2016 – With its most recent solar efficiency record of 31.6%, Alta Devices continues to achieve solar efficiencies that are substantially higher than all other commercially available solar technologies.

This breakthrough, combined with its unique thinness and flexibility, redefines how solar technology can be used. In particular, Alta’s solar technology is of great interest in the UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) market. The increased power-to-weight ratio of Alta’s technology enables dramatically different possibilities for an aircraft using this technology versus any of the other solar power options. 

Enerray to Build Brazil’s Largest Solar Plant

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Enerray, owned by Seci Energia (Gruppo Industriale Maccaferri), one of Europe’s most active solar developers, is set to begin construction of Brazil’s largest solar installation, located in the city of Ituverava.

The 254 MWp solar plant, one of the largest in the world, will be located in the State of Bahia, in northeastern Brazil. The estimated annual energy production will be approximately 500 GWh and construction will be completed by the end of 2017. The photovoltaic panels will feature single-axis trackers to allow the modules to change positions during the day depending on the position of the sun to maximize output.

This is the largest solar power plant built by Enel Green Power and will help Brazil meet its rapidly growing electricity demand.

Solar cell material can recycle light to boost efficiency

Perovskite materials can recycle light particles – a finding which could lead to a new generation of affordable, high-performance solar cells.

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Depiction of photon recycling inside the crystalline structure of perovskite. The study shows that perovskite can reabsorb photons that are regenerated inside the material, a feature which could enable researchers to break through the efficiency limits of existing solar cells. Image credit: Criss Hohmann.

Scientists have discovered that a highly promising group of materials known as hybrid lead halide perovskites can recycle light – a finding that they believe could lead to large gains in the efficiency of solar cells.

Hybrid lead halide perovskites are a particular group of synthetic materials which have been the subject of intensive scientific research, as they appear to promise a revolution in the field of solar energy. As well as being cheap and easy to produce, perovskite solar cells have, in the space of a few years, become almost as energy-efficient as silicon – the material currently used in most household solar panels.

Solar photovoltaic manufacturers to invest over $5 billion in 2016 for new production capacity and technology upgrades

Capital expenditures to reach five-year high as confidence returns to solar manufacturing segment.

The solar photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing sector is forecast to increase capital expenditure (capex) on new factories and technologies in 2016 by more than 60 percent, compared to 2012, when manufacturing capex fell to a six-year low.

Manufacturing-related investments are forecast to reach a five-year high of $5.3 billion in 2016, according to the new PV Manufacturing & Technology Quarterly report from the market research division of Solar Media Ltd.

The growth in solar PV manufacturing capex is being driven mainly by two factors: the requirement to upgrade the productivity of existing solar cell production lines to increase solar module power ratings; and the need for Chinese suppliers to locate solar cell and module capacity outside China to fully capitalize on overseas end-market demand growth.

2015 State Solar Jobs Census Numbers from The Solar Foundation

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California Has Largest Job Creation Year Ever; Massachusetts 2nd in Overall State Jobs Rankings, Nevada and New York Round Out Top Four First-ever Solar Jobs Census figures, down to the state and federal congressional district levels for all 50 states, by The Solar Foundation.

WASHINGTON, Feb. 10, 2016 — The Solar Foundation (TSF), an independent nonprofit research and education organization, today released state-by-state data from its annual National Solar Jobs Census series via the State Solar Jobs Census Map. This year’s State Census provides the most detailed solar jobs information for every state including data on solar jobs per state and federal congressional district.

The new data show that California not only maintained its leader position, but created over 20,000 new quality jobs in one year, and became the first state to surpass the 75,000 solar jobs benchmark. Massachusetts solidified the number two-position while becoming the second state to have more than 15,000 solar jobs. In addition to California and Massachusetts: Nevada, Florida, Maryland, Tennessee, Oregon, Michigan, and Utah are among the top 20 solar jobs states that grew by 30% or more. Thirty-three states (including the District of Columbia) saw positive growth over 2014.

Interview with SolarWindow CEO, John Conklin

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The following is a Q & A with SolarWindow Technologies (WNDW) President and CEO, John A. Conklin

1. SolarWindows are created by applying ultra-thin layers of liquid coating onto glass and flexible plastics. Are there any other substrates you are looking into? Any other uses?

No, at this time the commercialization of SolarWindow focuses on glass and flexible plastic. Plans to coat on substrates other than glass and flexible plastic is planned but not near term.

Commercial development of the SolarWindow products include:

• SolarWindow™ – Commercial, Structural, and Architectural Glass (Commercial) – Flat glass products for installation in new commercial towers under construction and replacement windows, glass walls and curtains, and textured and decorative interior glass walls, room dividers, etc

• SolarWindow™ – Residential – A window glass for installation in new residential homes under construction and replacement windows

• SolarWindow™ – BIPV – Components associated with BIPV applications in homes, buildings, and office towers

• SolarWindow™ Retrofit & Flexible Veneer – Transparent, tinted, and flexible veneers that installers can apply directly over top of existing windows on tall towers and skyscrapers

Our primary focus is first on the development and deployment of SolarWindow™-Commercial products.