PPG Wins $3 Million DOE Grant to Advance PV Glass Technology
Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries has received a $3.1 million grant from
the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop the materials, coating
designs and manufacturing processes necessary to commercialize a new glass
article for the cadmium telluride (CdTe) module manufacturing industry.
CdTe is a thin-film coating that PPG says has the potential to improve
the performance of photovoltaic (PV) glass. James McCamy, manager of solar
technologies for PPG, says the new glass will combine three new technological
innovations into a single product, with the goal of reducing CdTe module
costs by 17 percent by 2015. “This could represent a significant step
toward grid parity for solar energy,” McCamy adds.
The grant is part of a $20 million investment by the DOE in the Solar
Energy Technologies Program. The PPG award will be delivered through the
Photovoltaic Supply Chain and Cross-Cutting Technologies program, which
aims to accelerate the development of PV products or processes with the
aid of related technologies from non-solar companies.
PPG says technology and process development will be coordinated through
its Solar Technologies Group and project partnerships with the Center
for Next Generation Photovoltaics at Colorado State University and the
Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which is managed by UT-Battelle for the
Department of Energy.
Guardian Industries to Add Solar Energy Product Line
Guardian Industries will invest $2.1 million to expand operations at its
Consolidated Glass and Mirror facility in Galax, Va. The project, a new
solar energy product manufacturing line, will create 40 new jobs.
Founded in Galax in 1979, Consolidated Glass and Mirror Corp. became a
subsidiary of Guardian Industries in 1992. The expansion will enable the
company to produce specially coated mirrors used in the technology of
concentrating solar power (CSP), a type of solar thermal power. The mirrors
track the sun and radiate its energy onto a central receiver, creating
the power equivalent of hundreds of suns. That power is used to vaporize
water into steam to power a turbine for the generation of electricity.
to Solar Initiatives
Pilkington North America Inc. has gone solar, thanks to a new one-acre
solar array project at its research and development center in Northwood,
Ohio. Hull & Associates Inc., a newly formed renewable energy project
development and asset management company, partnered with the company to
develop and install a 250 kW ground-mounted solar photovoltaic energy
facility on a brownfield site originating from the company’s former East
Toledo float plant. This solar energy facility, which went online at the
end of February, is the largest private sector, behind-the-meter, renewable
energy project in Ohio.
“This project highlights the NSG Group’s commitment to responsible stewardship
and the solar energy market both locally and around the world,” says Cliff
Fleener, environmental manager.
The development uses solar panels incorporating the NSG Group’s solar
energy glass products, supplied by First Solar.
The Northwood solar energy facility supplies approximately 12 percent
of its power requirements, while reducing annual electric consumption
and greenhouse gas emissions.
Development of the $1.5 million solar energy project was partially supported
by a $680,782 grant from the Ohio Energy Office through the American Recovery
and Reinvestment Act’s State Energy Program.
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