Texas A&M U-Central Texas Launches Center for Solar Energy

Texas A&M University-Central Texas has launched the Center for Solar Energy to evaluate, develop, and test new photovoltaic solar technologies.

The new center, covering approximately 800 acres and costing nearly $600 million, will power the A&M Central Texas campus and “will host the largest assortment of photovoltaic technologies in the world and serve as a true test site for leading-edge technologies,” according to a school news release. To further encourage research and education into renewable energy, the university will also be adding new curriculum offerings with plans to expand them as the project grows.

Designed as an incubator, the center will provide support for training, engineering, demonstration, and manufacturing in an effort to bring new technologies to market within two years.

Written by Joshua Bolkan. To read the full article, click here.

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Which US states are hot for solar power?

Solar power technology is proliferating across the U.S. as costs drop and awareness grows. (Check out these charts to see solar’s amazing growth last year.) But the political atmosphere for solar power varies greatly state to state.

To help navigate the landscape, clean energy advocacy group Solar Power Rocks released its 2013 rankings for states’ commitment to solar power. The group ranked states based on a methodology that factors in five years’ of data regarding solar incentives, policy, infrastructure and metering, and assigned states a letter grade based on how easy or difficult it is to go solar.

Written by Rani Molla. To read the full article, click here

Solar Panel Costs Drop, Fueling Rise In Renewable Energy

BERLIN — A dramatic drop in the price of solar power technology last year helped the continued growth of renewable energy, according to a U.N.-backed report published Wednesday.

Global energy-generating capacity from renewable sources rose by 115 gigawatts in 2012, compared with 105 gigawatts the previous year, the report by the Paris-based think tank REN21 showed.

Installed renewable energy capacity rose to over 1,470 gigawatts, equivalent to about 1,500 nuclear reactors. Two thirds of all renewable capacity still comes from hydropower, but wind and solar have been gaining. The worldwide capacity of photovoltaic cells, which convert sunshine into electricity, reached 100 gigawatts last year, the report said.

Written by Huffington Post. To read the full article, click here