U.S. Department of Energy

    DOE Announces Market Transformation Selections for Solar America Initiative

    March 26, 2007

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced the selection of the first of several market transformation awards under the President's Solar America Initiative (SAI). These market transformation activities will complement the recently announced Technology Pathway Partnership R&D awards and aim to lower market barriers to commercialization of solar technology. The awards were competitively selected and continue the public-private nature of the SAI.

    DOE has selected New Mexico State University and its partners to lead a new Solar Codes and Standards Working Group. The Working Group will address code development and outreach activities in areas of critical importance to solar market penetration, such as interconnection procedures, net metering, product safety, and international standards coordination. The 5-year, $4.2M effort, subject to award negotiation, will create a major improvement in the responsiveness, effectiveness, and accessibility of codes and standards to U.S. solar stakeholders at all levels.

    In addition, DOE has selected four organizations to conduct tailored solar technical outreach to states and utilities. The National Conference of State Legislatures, the Clean Energy Group, the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, and the Solar Electric Power Association will provide resources and best practices to address solar issues faced by states and utilities. These 3-year, cost-shared awards total $2.8 M ($1.2M of which is private cost-shared funding), subject to award negotiation.

    DOE has also selected two institutions to analyze utility capacity credit valuation of distributed solar to benefit our utility stakeholders. Studies will be conducted by Tucson Electric Power and the Research Foundation of the State University of New York. These one-year studies total $225,000, subject to award negotiation, and will help utilities measure the impact and value of distributed photovoltaics on the grid.