The EERE Blog includes updates to current Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) projects, interviews with energy experts, and success stories about EERE’s technology offices and national laboratories. Subscribe to the blog email list.
The vast majority of solar modules are currently made with silicon, as the material is widely available, relatively low-cost, and able to reach high efficiencies. Today, nearly all silicon wafers for solar modules are manufactured by first transforming the raw material into silicon blocks, which are then sawed into thin wafers that are turned into solar cells and integrated into modules. But one SunShot Initiative awardee has developed a method that is changing the game.
In honor of National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Day on October 8, we sit down with Byron McCormick, one of the “founding fathers” of hydrogen and fuel cells, to talk about his experiences during his more than 50-year career. Byron began his career in 1974 at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he first explored the possibility of using fuel cells in vehicles.
The Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative (CEMI) was established in 2013 to apply the Energy Department’s resources and capabilities to increase U.S. competitiveness in the production of clean energy technologies and increase U.S. manufacturing energy productivity across the board. CEMI helped achieve those goals and then some, as demonstrated in the recently published CEMI Accomplishments report.
The plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market hit a major milestone in September when the 500,000th PEV was sold in America. As the recently released Revolution..Now report details, decreased costs of batteries for PEVs is one reason for the uptick in sales, but there are several other factors that have made these vehicles an attractive transportation option.
More than seven million Americans have been helped by the Energy Department’s Weatherization Assistance Program over the last four decades and many top accomplishments were recently recognized by congressional leaders at a Washington D.C. event showcasing how this program continues to reduce energy costs for low-income households.
As the recently released Revolution..Now report details, the declining cost of solar power has enabled a massive increase in the amount of solar capacity installed in America. The next step is ensuring the nation's electric grid is ready for a solar-powered future.
Build4Scale will help entrepreneurs cost effectively build their clean energy products by providing training on manufacturing fundamentals like material selection, design for assembly, and working with production partners. Ultimately, training cleantech entrepreneurs on the fundamentals of manufacturing will help bring promising energy solutions to market.
Due to recent declines in the price of solar energy, the Energy Department's Weatherization Assistance Program is now incorporating solar into their services with a home in Colorado the first to participate.
The new Revolution…Now report, which highlights the dramatic growth and decreasing costs of five clean energy technologies: wind turbines, photovoltaic (PV) solar modules for both utility-scale plants and distributed systems, electric vehicles (EVs), and light-emitting diodes (LEDs), shows that the Energy Department’s investments in clean energy technologies are paying off – and then some.
Deputy Secretary of Energy Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall announced today a new pilot program called Lab-Bridge that will make it easier for Department of Energy National Laboratories to fast-track the great ideas and technologies they generate into the marketplace.
For Janine Benner, energy conservation and sustainable transportation runs through her blood. The new Associate Assistant Secretary for the Energy Department’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) sat down recently to discuss her energy-saving parents, her own path to energy efficiency, and her new role with the Energy Department.
Across the nation, scientists are on a mission to produce affordable and sustainable biofuels and products from algae, including jet fuel and plastics. Algae scientists funded by the Energy Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office have been busy expanding the tools available to support breakthroughs in biology that could lead to major improvements in algae growth and productivity.
The Energy Department is supporting efforts to phase down the global use of climate-change causing hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) used in cooling and refrigeration. These chemicals can be thousands of times more potent than carbon dioxide and last for centuries when released into the atmosphere.
The Better Buildings, Better Plants program took center stage at the 2016 World Energy Engineering Congress in Washington, D.C. as it continues to improve efficiency for U.S. manufacturers and public water utilities.
The Energy Department’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) is investing in programs that ensure the future workforce can meet and exceed the needs of the booming clean energy sector. These educational opportunities set students up for success throughout their careers and help the U.S. remain a global leader in clean energy innovation
The Energy Department supports a number of collaborations with African nations that share the goals of the U.S.-Africa Business Forum. One key collaboration, managed by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s International program, is the South Africa Clean Energy Project. The goal of this project is to encourage the adoption of increasingly stringent energy efficient building codes, and to accelerate the deployment of related clean energy products.
Traditional supermarket refrigeration systems found in most U.S. grocery stores require a substantial amount of energy to keep fruits and vegetables fresh year round. An average supermarket consumes nearly 2 million kilowatt hours per year, and refrigeration accounts for nearly half of that. They are also prone to significant refrigerant leakage—20 to 25% leakage a year of the two to four thousand pound refrigerant inventory—emitting environmentally harmful greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
The goal of our High Performance Computing for Manufacturing (HPC4Mfg) program is to allow more entrepreneurs and innovators to tap into this technology. We have set out to partner innovative manufacturers from across the country with our world-class supercomputers and the Lab experts who know how to maximize their strength.