The Biden-Harris Administration, through the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), has announced new initiatives and $56 million in funding to promote innovation in solar manufacturing and recycling. The funding will aim to help make clean energy more affordable and reliable, create jobs and enhance U.S. economic growth and competitiveness. Developing more solar power, the cheapest form of new electricity supply, is key to achieving President Biden’s goal of 100% clean electricity by 2035.
The new programs that were announced are designed to drive innovation in solar technology and manufacturing, supporting opportunities for the U.S. to expand production of thin-film modules, which do not rely on foreign-dominated supply chains, as well as supporting newer technologies like perovskite solar cells.
The $29 million FY22 Photovoltaics (PV) Research and Development funding opportunity includes funds aimed at supporting projects that increase the reuse and recycling of solar technologies. The funding opportunity also supports projects to develop PV module designs that reduce manufacturing costs, as well as those that advance the manufacturing of PV cells made from perovskites.
The FY22 Solar Manufacturing Incubator funding opportunity will provide $27 million for projects aimed at commercializing new technologies that can expand private investment in U.S. solar manufacturing. Funding is available for projects that ready new technologies and manufacturing processes for commercialization and demonstrate solutions that can boost domestic manufacturing of thin-film PV made from cadmium telluride, the second-most common PV technology on the market, behind silicon.