On February 8, the Department of Energy announced an additional $12 million to support solar energy innovation.
The DOE’s SunShot Incubator Program provides funding to small businesses and entrepreneurs to develop technologies that will reduce the cost of installing solar.
“Investments in American energy and manufacturing are critical building blocks for an American economy built to last,” said Secretary Chu. “The SunShot Incubator program fosters the innovative small businesses that will rapidly bring technological advances to market and pioneer a new era in American energy.”
The Incubator program is now it’s seventh round. As before, the Department is seeking proposals for technologies that will reduce costs for deployment of solar power. These include not only developments in PV and concentrating solar power, but also installation and energy storage methods, and permitting and financing processes.
The Incubator program is just one part of the DOE’s SunShot Initiative, which aims to make solar energy price competitive with other energy forms by 2020, and to reduce the cost of solar energy systems by 75% without long-term government subsidies.
As part of this initiative, the DOE has invested $60 million through the Incubator program since 2007; according to the Department, these investments have involved almost 40 companies and have “catalyzed $1.6 billion in private sector support.”