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1 June 2009


DOE selects EPIR/Sunovia’s CdTe-on-Si PV technology

The cadmium telluride on silicon (CdTe/Si) solar technology of Sunovia Energy Technologies Inc of Sarasota, FL and EPIR Technologies Inc of Bolingbrook, IL (in which Sunovia has a stake) has been selected for award negotiation for the Solar America Initiative (SAI) Photovoltaic Technology Pre-Incubator award, as announced by US energy secretary Steven Chu. The selection process was conducted in accordance with the ‘Best Value Selection’ requirements of the Department of Energy. The Solar America Initiative is the US program for the development and commercialization of solar energy, and the Pre-Incubator award is one of the most prestigious SAI awards.

The primary SAI program goal is the development and commercialization of environmentally friendly solar energy technologies to produce electricity at costs competitive with electricity generated from fossil and nuclear fuels. Sunovia and EPIR expect to achieve such grid parity by commercializing high-efficiency multi-junction CdTe-based concentrator solar cells at a small fraction of the cost of the III-V multi-junction solar cells that are currently used in concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) applications. CPV technology uses inexpensive lenses to concentrate sunlight onto small, highly efficient solar cells, thus requiring less land and far less costly material than other photovoltaic technologies.

“The selection of our solar technology by the Department of Energy is a confirmation by the government's leading solar energy experts of the potential commercial value of the developments that EPIR and Sunovia have accomplished,” says EPIR’s founder, president & CEO Dr Siva Sivananthan.

“Our partners at EPIR have a virtual monopoly on single-crystal CdTe/Si production, which provides us with critical advantages and protections as we commercialize this new product line,” says Sunovia’s CEO Carl Smith. “We have already signed a contract to construct the largest CPV solar energy power plant in the world, which will create important manufacturing jobs for many workers laid off by the US semiconductor and automotive industries,” he adds. “EPIR has already begun hiring skilled technicians and workers in Illinois who were laid off by these industries, and we are working through the appropriate channels to ensure that new manufacturing jobs are created in states with important demographic synergies.”

See related items:

Sunovia and EPIR win $9m SBIR award from DoD

Sunovia finalizes $33m order for EPIR’s MWIR wafers

Sunovia and EPIR improve growth of single-crystal CdTe-on-Si for CPVs

Sunovia and EPIR down-convert UV to visible light in transparent glass for enhanced PV efficiencies

Search: Sunovia EPIR CdTe/Si