DOE invests in the future of solar technology
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) invested $21.7 million into 25 projects designed to make solar energy cost-competitive with conventional electricity by 2015.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) invested $21.7 million into 25 projects designed to make solar energy cost-competitive with conventional electricity by 2015. Nineteen of the projects involve universities such as Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford University; the other six projects include companies such as Wakonda Technologies, Fairport, N.Y.; Solexant, Sunnyvale, Calif.; and Mayaterials Inc., Ann Arbor, Mich.
The DOE is investing $800,000 each in Solexant and Mayaterials for continued research into next-generation photovoltaic projects. Solexant will develop inexpensive and inorganic photovoltaic cells, which will harvest more energy than conventional methods, and Mayaterials will obtain solar-grade silicon from agricultural byproducts. Wakonda Technologies will receive $900,000 for the application of low-cost conventional thin-film manufacturing techniques to the production of large area, high-efficiency multi-junction photovoltaics.
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey