The Wild and (Potentially) Wonderful World of Solar Fuels

The first step in understanding solar fuels -- fuels generated directly from sunlight -- is to forget what you know about how energy is generated and installed, according to Caltech Chemistry Professor Nathan Lewis, who’s been leading research on the subject at the university for a decade and working on the science for some 40 years.

“It’s not going to look like anything that's been developed or deployed in any functional form" yet, he said.

While the process most closely resembles artificial photosynthesis, Lewis' solar fuel device won't resemble a leaf. Instead, picture a rain jacket with multiple layers that take in water, carbon dioxide

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One of every 50 jobs created in the U.S. last year was in the solar industry, while installed solar capacity nearly doubled in one year
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More than 260,000 workers in the U.S. have found employment in the solar industry, with 51,000 jobs added to the workforce in 2016 alone, according to a new report from the non-profit Solar Foundation.

Among the highlights:

  • Of all the jobs created in the U.S. last year, 2% of them were in the solar industry.
  • Solar jobs have grown at a 20% or more clip every year for the past four years and have almost tripled since the first census report was completed in 2010.

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NRG Fully Exits the Home Solar Installation Business

NRG Energy is shedding the remains of its residential solar installation business in an attempt to find a sustainable model in the tumultuous rooftop PV market.

According to sources, employees were informed today that the solar unit, called NRG Home Solar, will be downsized once more. In May of last year, the company laid off 500 employees, pulled out of three states, moved the residential solar business back under the retail arm, and began outsourcing financing and installations to third parties.

GTM was unable to confirm the most recent number of layoffs. However, it learned that employees on the sales team received notices today.

Last year, California’s solar industry celebrated its win on preserving net metering. This year, it gets hit by the other side of the equation -- time-of-use (TOU) rates.

Over the coming months, California’s big three utilities will be filing general rate cases that shift the hourly schedule of on-peak and off-peak hours -- and the widely varying retail prices per kilowatt-hour that go with them -- into much later in the day.

The resulting drop in value of net-metered, on-site solar for future solar projects will be considerable, according to solar industry analyses. It could amount to 15 to 20 percent for San Diego residential

Sonnen Expands US Presence With Battery Manufacturing Hub in Atlanta

The German home battery startup Sonnen is expanding its U.S. footprint with a significant investment in a new North American Innovation Center in Atlanta, Georgia.

Sonnen announced today that the InnovationHub will bring all of the company’s U.S. product development and manufacturing capabilities under one roof, allowing for new product innovation and the ability to rapidly scale up production capacity.

“Sonnen U.S. has experienced exponential sales growth over the past year, making the Sonnen InnovationHub a smart investment to capitalize upon the immense potential of the North American energy storage market,” said Christoph Ostermann, Sonnen Group CEO, in a statement. Bringing the company’s U.S. manufacturing and

A Guy Driving a Tesla Saved a Stroke Victim Stuck in a Runaway Volkswagen

Teslarati: Musk Thanks Tesla Driver for Sacrificing Model S in Order to Save Stroke Victim's Life

The 41-year-old German man who deliberately placed his Tesla Model S in front of a runaway Volkswagen Passat, after finding the driver unconscious as a result of a stroke, is being heralded as a hero. Not just by the 57-year-old life that he saved, but by Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself.

Musk took to Twitter to congratulate Manfred Kick for sacrificing his car to bring the out of control VW safely to a stop. In appreciation for the heroic act, Musk said Tesla will be expediting repairs and will

It was a decent Valentine's Day for lovers of SolarEdge photovoltaic panel optimizers.

The firm announced its financial results yesterday afternoon for the quarter ended December 31 and although SolarEdge reported top and bottom line below street expectations, the solar electronics firm managed to post a strong gross margin of 33 percent. Last quarter, GTM Research analyst Scott Moskowitz noted SolarEdge "overachieved on margin," hitting 32.6 percent versus a guidance of 30 percent to 32 percent.

A research note from Oppenheimer explains that "the big test for [SolarEdge] will begin later in CY17 as the impact of China-based competition is clearer and

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We are a privately-owned Qatari company established in June 2011 and operating from Doha, Qatar.

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