The Potential for Solar Energy

The Potential for Solar Energy

Solar deployment has increased 100-fold in the past decade, yet solar energy supplies just 1% of U.S. electricity today. In a little over 10 years, solar is expected to grow to about 5% of U.S. electricity and hit 10-20% by 2050. But more is possible. With aggressive solar and storage technology cost declines and a focus on grid integration, the country could more than double that deployment. This talk describes promising pathways for advanced solar technologies and for integrating solar with energy storage and other technologies. Becca Jones-Albertus also looks at the associated projections for solar deployment based on NREL’s Regional Energy Deployment System model.

This talk was presented on November 8, 2017 as part of the IHS Markit Seminar Series.

About the speaker:

Becca Jones-Albertus is the acting deputy director for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office, working to advance solar energy technology and accelerate market adoption with an annual budget of over 0 million (to date). The Solar Office has a history of working to reduce the cost of solar electricity through the SunShot Initiative and, with the rapid growth in solar deployment, is now expanding its emphasis on solving the challenges related to integrating large amounts of solar energy onto the grid.

Jones-Albertus has spent her career advancing solar technology, from fundamental research and development to manufacturing. Prior to joining the Department of Energy, Jones-Albertus was at Solar Junction, where she led efforts developing the company’s two-time world record solar cells and then transferring that technology to a high volume manufacturing toolset.

Jones-Albertus graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University with a BS in electrical engineering, and also holds a MS and PhD in materials science and engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. She has more than 10 patents and 30 technical publications.

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The MIT Energy Initiative is MIT’s hub for energy research, education, and outreach. Learn more at http://energy.mit.edu.
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