Thursday, December 20, 2007

Solar At $1 a Watt - Cheaper Than Coal

California (TGW) – Nanosolar, whose cheap solar panels are expected to revolutionize the solar market, has begun selling its panels commercially.

The company’s radical manufacturing process “prints” photovoltaic material on aluminum backing to reduce the manufacturing cost of solar panels by more than 80%.

Unlike most solar companies, Nanosolar has concentrated on lowering the cost of manufacturing the panels, rather than increasing the efficiency of the panels.

Nanosolar’s founder and chief executive, Martin Roscheisen, says the panels can be produced at a cost of $1 per watt.

“With a $1-per-watt panel,” he said, “it is possible to build $2-per-watt systems.”

According to the Department of Energy, building a new coal plant costs about $2.1 a watt, plus the cost of fuel and emissions, he said.

The company’s orders are sold out for the first 18 months of production.

Via :: NYT