Massachusetts Solar Companies Get $12.6M in Funding

Three solar companies in Massachusetts were awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative to be used toward research and innovation.   The SunShot Initiative is the national effort to reduce the cost of utility scale solar installations by 75% in the next decade.  The DOE plans to reach this goal by providing grants to companies that help make solar energy cost competitive with other energy sources.

The three Bay State companies who will receive DOE funds include 1336 Technologies, Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates, and Veeco Instruments.  Massachusetts has long been known as a hub for biotech and information technology. Thanks to strong political support for renewables and energy efficiency and being located near leading colleges and universities, the state is emerging as one of the hottest areas for energy innovation.

1366 Technologies, a Lexington, MA based company, received $3M from the Department of Energy.  The mission of 1366 Tech is to cut the cost of solar power and increase the efficiency of solar cell production by eliminating two steps in the traditional manufacturing process.  Executives have said that the technology should be available commercially next year.

Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates (VSEA), headquartered in Gloucester, MA, will be using the $4.8M grant they are given towards research and development of interdigitated back contact (IBC) cells, currently the most efficient silicon cells available on the market.  Solar cells traditionally have metal collectors on the front surface which blocks sunlight, thereby lowering efficiency.  Varian manufactures IBC solar cells with metallic conductors on the underside to absorb the energy generated by sunlight.

Veeco Instruments, Inc. was able to secure $4.8M in funding to manufacture cost effective Copper, Indium, Gallium, Selenium (CIGS) solar cells.  Varian, located in Lowell, MA, will use the endowment to accelerate commercialization of CIGS deposition fabrication systems.

I’m proud to live in a state well positioned for the new energy economy.  Not only is Massachusetts home to some of the most innovative solar companies, the Bay State is committed to lower carbon emissions by 25% below 1990 levels in the next 10 years.  Brightstar Solar can help you make clean, green solar electricity and do your part to reduce greenhouse gases in Massachusetts.  We keep abreast of the latest technologies and how to incorporate them in existing projects.  Our company offers a complimentary solar evaluation so you can decide if solar power is right for your home or business.  Rebates are not for “do-it yourself” projects and you must involve a licensed Massachusetts solar installer.  Please contact us online or at 617-564-0050 to schedule an appointment.