DOE is funding two solar projects that are developing innovative plug-and-play photovoltaic (PV) systems that can be purchased, installed, and operational in one day. Part of the SunShot Systems Integration efforts, these projects will help drive innovations to fundamentally change the design and installation of residential PV systems, reducing costs for homeowners and simplifying installation and grid connectivity.
On December 7, 2012, DOE announced $21 million to fund these projects.
Fraunhofer USA, Inc., Center for Sustainable Energy Systems
- Develop technologies, components, systems, and standards that enable a homeowner to easily select the right-sized PV system for their house, purchase a configured system, install the system on their rooftop with minimal help, wire the system safely with preconfigured cabling, and connect it to an existing PV-ready smart meter. The utility will remotely grant permission to the system to connect, and the PV system will immediately start to produce power that can be consumed in the house or fed into the distribution grid.
North Carolina State University FREEDM Systems Engineering Center
Raleigh, North Carolina
- Perform analysis, design, and innovation to address each stage in the value chain of grid-interactive residential PV systems while taking a broader systems perspective encompassing the PV supply chain, codes and standards, regulations, inspection, and marketability. This project will substantially reduce the unit cost of installed residential solar PV systems by creating standard components and system designs that require little or no custom engineering, can be installed and connected to the grid efficiently, and meet refined building and electrical codes.
DOE is funding these projects to reach the aggressive goals of the SunShot Initiative.