Where to look for more information...

We've been in the business a long time, but we're still amazed at the rapidly changing photovoltaic industry - PV installation, equipment, incentives, market growth, new state initiatives, etc.

This section rounds up news from several sources available to us all. Come back often to check the constantly updated news headline.

Renewable Energy News

Solar Company and Bronx College Plan a Technology Hub

Fri, 26 Sep 2014 00:00:00 -0400

Struggling to hire enough workers for its growing business, OnForce Solar is partnering with Bronx Community College on a center for emerging companies and to help develop a skilled local work force.

Efficiently harvesting hydrogen fuel from Sun using Earth-abundant materials

Thu, 25 Sep 2014 14:12:32 EDT

Scientists have a new efficient way of producing hydrogen fuel from sunlight and water. By combining a pair of solar cells made with a mineral called perovskite and low cost electrodes, scientists have obtained a 12.3 percent conversion efficiency from solar energy to hydrogen, a record using Earth-abundant materials as opposed to rare metals.

World's smallest reference material is big plus for nanotechnology

Thu, 25 Sep 2014 13:28:33 EDT

The National Institute of Standards and Technology recently issued Reference Material 8027, the smallest known reference material ever created for validating measurements of these human-made, ultrafine particles between 1 and 100 nanometers -- billionths of a meter -- in size.

New organic semiconductor material: Organic tin in polymers increases their light absorption

Thu, 25 Sep 2014 13:13:49 EDT

Researchers have integrated organic tin into semiconducting polymers (plastics) for the first time. Semiconducting polymers can be used, for example, for the absorption of sun light in solar cells. By incorporating organic tin into the plastic, light can be absorbed over a wide range of the solar spectrum.

Swiss Pilots to Fly Solar Plane Around World

Thu, 25 Sep 2014 00:00:00 -0400

The trip, which will begin and end in Abu Dhabi, will involve about 25 days of flying over four to five months, with stops in Asia, the United States and Southern Europe or North Africa.

Natural gas usage will have little effect on carbon dioxide emissions, researchers find

Wed, 24 Sep 2014 11:36:59 EDT

Abundant supplies of natural gas will do little to reduce harmful U.S. emissions causing climate change, according to researchers. They found that inexpensive gas boosts electricity consumption and hinders expansion of cleaner energy sources, such as wind and solar.

New mobile solar unit is designed to save lives when the power goes out

Wed, 24 Sep 2014 11:29:56 EDT

Brooke Ellison draws her own power from will, but the ventilator that keeps her alive requires uninterrupted electricity. Dr. Ellison is allowing scientists to field-test, at her home, the Nextek Power Systems STAR, a mobile solar generator.

Solar cells cheap enough to quickly cover for their cost: Could double as semi-transparent blinds for windows

Wed, 24 Sep 2014 08:48:51 EDT

One of the most common complaints about solar power is solar panels are still too expensive to be worth the investment. Many researchers have responded by making solar cells, the tile-like components of solar panels that absorb and transfer energy, more efficient and longer lasting. But even the longest living solar cells that most effectively convert sunlight to energy will not become common if they are prohibitively expensive.

Solar energy-driven process could revolutionize oil sands tailings reclamation

Tue, 23 Sep 2014 18:21:40 EDT

A civil engineering research team has developed a new way to clean oil sands process affected water and reclaim tailings ponds in Alberta's oil sands industry. Using sunlight as a renewable energy source instead of UV lamps, and adding chlorine to the tailings, oil sands process affected water is decontaminated and detoxified -- immediately.

Solar explosions 'inside' a computer: Understanding solar flares to improve predictions

Tue, 23 Sep 2014 10:22:31 EDT

Strong solar flares can bring down communications and power grids on Earth. By demonstrating how these gigantic eruptions are caused, physicists are laying the foundations for future predictions. The shorter the interval between two explosions in the solar atmosphere, the more likely it is that the second flare will be stronger than the first one.

Magnetic fields make the excitons go 'round: New way to improve efficiency of solar cells

Sun, 21 Sep 2014 14:51:08 EDT

A major limitation in the performance of solar cells happens within the photovoltaic material itself: When photons strike the molecules of a solar cell, they transfer their energy, producing quasi-particles called excitons -- an energized state of molecules. That energized state can hop from one molecule to the next until it's transferred to electrons in a wire, which can light up a bulb or turn a motor.

Fracking's environmental impacts scrutinized

Sun, 21 Sep 2014 09:29:38 EDT

Greenhouse gas emissions from the production and use of shale gas would be comparable to conventional natural gas, but the controversial energy source actually fared better than renewables on some environmental impacts, according to new research.

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