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Old Posted Mar 20, 2013, 3:56 PM
amor de cosmos amor de cosmos is offline
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Solar Creates Twice As Many Jobs As Coal, Nearly 3 Times More Than Natural Gas For Every $1 Invested
March 19, 2013 in Jobs, Science, Solar Policy, Solar Research

Just as a quick reminder, if our national goal is to create jobs, investing in clean energy, especially solar, is several times more effective than investing in fossil fuel or nuclear jobs.

Robert Pollin, the President of Pear Energy and a professor of economics at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, has studied this matter in depth with the Department of Energy and the International Labour Organization. As his Pear Energy team writes:

“The basic facts are simple. When we invest, say, $1 million in building the green economy, this creates about 17 jobs within the United States. By comparison, if we continue to spend as we do on fossil fuels and nuclear energy, you create only about 5 jobs per $1 million in spending. That is, we create about 12 more jobs for every $1 million in spending — 300 percent more jobs — every time we spend on building the green economy as opposed to maintaining our dependence on dirty and dangerous oil, coal, natural gas, and nuclear power.”

New Jersey hits 1 GW installed PV capacity
20. March 2013 | Applications & Installations, Markets & Trends | By: Jonathan Gifford

Figures from a SEIA/GTM Research study released last week have confirmed that the state of New Jersey has hit the 1 GW installed photovoltaic capacity milestone. The state added 415 MW of capacity in 2012, an increase of one-third on 2011, when 313 MW was installed.

New Jersey has confirmed its status as a major photovoltaic market, coming in third place behind California and Arizona, for both the amount of cumulative photovoltaic capacity installed and the amount installed in 2012. SEIA claims that 5,700 jobs have been created by the solar industry in the state.

Net metering laws and a state solar requirement are the main drivers in photovoltaic growth in New Jersey, cites SEIA in a statement celebrating the 1 GW milestone. The statement continues that installed cost declines are a third contributing factor behind the continuing growth of photovoltaics in the state.

SEIA’s Carrie Hitt said that New Jersey policymakers continue to be at the forefront of solar development. "Although the New Jersey solar market has seen volatility, we are confident that New Jersey will continue to be a leader, both in innovating policy mechanisms to grow the industry and in installing solar to power homes and businesses," said Hitt.

GCEP Scientists Make Solar Energy Chip 100 Times More Efficient
By Mike Ross
GCEP Factsheet: Photon Enhanced Thermionic Emission (PETE) for Solar Concentrator Systems

Scientists working at the Stanford Institute for Materials and Energy Sciences (SIMES) have improved an innovative solar-energy device to be about 100 times more efficient than its previous design in converting the sun's light and heat into electricity.

"This is a major step toward making practical devices based on our technique for harnessing both the light and heat energy provided by the sun," said Nicholas Melosh, associate professor of materials science and engineering at Stanford and a researcher with SIMES, a joint SLAC/Stanford institute.

The new device is based on the photon-enhanced thermionic emission (PETE) process first demonstrated in 2010 by a group led by Melosh and SIMES colleague Zhi-Xun Shen, who is SLAC's advisor for science and technology. In a report last week in Nature Communications., the group described how they improved the device's efficiency from a few hundredths of a percent to nearly 2 percent, and said they expect to achieve at least another 10-fold gain in the future.

Conventional photovoltaic cells use a portion of the sun's spectrum of wavelengths to generate electricity. But PETE uses a special semiconductor chip to make electricity by using the entire spectrum of sunlight, including wavelengths that generate heat. In fact, the efficiency of thermionic emission improves dramatically at high temperatures, so adding PETE to utility-scale concentrating solar power plants, such as multi-megawatt power tower and parabolic trough projects in California's Mojave Desert, may increase their electrical output by 50 percent. Those systems use mirrors to focus sunlight into superbright, blazingly hot regions that boil water into steam, which then spins an electrical generator.

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