Renewable energy technologies will never get off the ground until they become cheaper than fossil fuels.
Today, Nanosolar CEO Martin Roscheisen says his startup took a step in that direction by shipping its first thin-film solar panel after five years of development. In a blog post, Roscheisen claims his company has produced “the world’s lowest-cost solar panel – which we believe will make us the first solar manufacturer capable of profitably selling solar panels at as little as $.99/Watt.” That would put energy systems made with Nanosolar panels within striking range of the price of coal, which is around $2.10 per watt for new coal plants. The way Nanosolar is lowering its cost is through a new manufacturing process. Instead of making solar panels out of silicon in $3 billion chip factories, it has developed a thin-film process that is more like roll-to-roll printing.
- Solar Power’s New Style (time.com)
- Three Innovations That Will Make Solar Power Easier and More Affordable (sustainablog.org)