The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced on December 11 that it would be distributing $13 million in grant funds to five companies for use in deploying new solar manufacturing technologies and methods. The goal of the grants, which were funded by the DOE’s SunShot Initiative, is to make solar module production more streamlined, efficient and inexpensive so that this technology can become even more widespread in both the residential and utility scale markets.

The grants will go to companies located in California, Georgia, Colorado, Pennsylvania and Oregon. The California grant was awarded to Solaria Corporation, located in Fremont. They produce photovoltaic (PV) modules for utility installations, and the money that they’ll be receiving will be used to automate the company’s production process in a further effort to reduce costs and increase its high volume operations.

The other grants were awarded to companies making similar efforts in both the PV and concentrated solar power (CSP) industries.

“The strong, continued growth in the U.S. solar industry over the past few years is giving more and more Americans access to affordable clean energy,” Ernest Moniz, the U.S. Secretary of Energy, said in a news release. “We have a tremendous opportunity for American manufacturing to lead the global clean energy market and help pave the way to a cleaner, more sustainable energy future.”

The federal government has made substantial contributions to the solar industry in the form of research and manufacturing grants. Along with state and local policy makers, they have also offered similar grants for residents, businesses and institutions that are looking to switch to renewable energy. For more information on the public programs available that make California solar energy affordable for everyone, contact West Coast Solar today.