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Solar in the News: Stanford University Studies New Solar Cells

Last week, Huffington Post released an article about research being conducted at Stanford University on new solar cell technology. Stanford University is at the front of the race to discover new solar cells that are more efficient and cheaper to use.  The goal is to make solar accessible to everyone.

Traditional solar cells are made of silicon semiconductors.  When exposed to heat or light, semiconductors conduct electricity (unlike  conductors such as metal which always carry electricity).  Stanford's findings begins with the "Quantum Dot." This is a new kind of solar cell previously designed to replace the silicon semiconductor.  This cell was revealed several years ago, but never took off because it was not as efficient as silicon and other solar cells.... read more

Benefits of Solar Thermal Water Heaters

Benefits of Solar Water Heat

If you are looking for ways to reduce your energy consumption, but financially it is just not the time to install large PV panels on your roof, you may want to consider opting for a Solar Thermal Water Heater. These heaters are significantly less costly than installing a full system (they range from about $1500 to $3500), but have many environmental benefits.... read more

Federal Solar Tax Rebates

All of us remember the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (aka the Stimulus Bill). Leaving the politics aside, the bill did some very important things for solar, including extending the tax incentives put forth in 2005 for solar installation.... read more

Solar Powered What?!?! 10 strange gizmos from bikinis to soccer balls...

Recently I have been doing a lot of research on all stuff solar – especially solar power for homes/businesses and solar water heating. But there are lots of products out there that don't require a major purchase in order to reduce your CO2 emissions. Some of them are a bit strange, but hey, I'll take it!

1. Solar Powered Bikini – Don't you hate it when your iPod and laptop run out of power at the beach? Dilemma solved. Student Andrew Schnieder designed the solar powered bikini with 1 USB input... just avoid the water.... read more

Hawaii Solar Tax Rebate Incentives

Hawaii is known for its sun, so it's totally appropriate the they have initiatives encouraging residents and businesses to go solar.... read more

Colorado Solar Incentives

Colorado Solar IncentivesIn 2004 the state of Colorado residents paved the way for other states by being the first in the nation to vote in solar rebate incentives. The goal was to help grow a new industry while pushing forward an environmental agenda. The voter-approved ballot measure provided up to $2/ watt of energy from the local utility (in most places, Xcel) on systems up to 2 megawatts in size.... read more

California Solar Incentives, Rebates, and Credits

In 2007 the state of California enacted the California Solar Initiative (CSI; http://www.gosolarcalifornia.ca.gov/) to create 3,000 megawatts of new solar power in the state by the end of 2017. Four years into the program information on the web is still pretty confusing. The General Market Program is the program that most people will apply for unless you are a low-income homeowner or solarizing a multifamily home. Here is what to know:... read more

California Solar Initiative Solar Thermal Rebate Program

california solar thermal heat

I recently wrote an article about the California Solar Initiative rebate incentive program, focusing on the “general market program” for PV solar installation. One of the other programs under the CSI umbrella is the Solar Thermal Hot Water program.... read more

Sunlight Solar Talks the Talk and Walks the Walk

Everyone knows that GREEN is the cool thing to do these days. Most of us do it because its the right thing to do for the future of our planet, but many companies have popped up to capitalize on this without practicing what they preach.  This is NOT the case with Sunlight Solar, an Oregon based solar installation company.  Sunlight Solar is a true example of companies that not only talk the talk, but walk the walk, too. ... read more

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