Archive for June 21, 2012

Reducing the Cost of Customer Acquisition through Online Web Portals

Bringing the cost of installed solar down to $1 per watt entails many challenges, many of which aren’t technical. EnergySage is building a solar PV price quote comparison platform. The founders come out of the financial services world, and think that customers should look at solar as an asset class, similar to stocks and bonds. “Our belief is clean energy will only become pervasive if it impacts the bottom line of the consumer and not just the environment,” said Vikram Aggarwal, CEO of EnergySage.

Solar Mosaic, received up to $2 million to lower the cost of solar financing and customer acquisition through a crowd-funding platform. Solar Mosaic’s platform currently allows people to invest in solar for community organizations. When there is enough funding, panels are put up and the community building pays Solar Mosaic a lower rate than they would pay a utility.

Clean Power Finance also received up to $1.5 million to reduce the cost of customer acquisition through its online platform and also to reduce the operations and maintenance and financing costs through its online marketplace. CFP essentially connects the capital market with the solar market, and has already financed more than $1 million dollars a day of residential power purchase agreements and leases.

TSEA is working on an article on the Hawkins Schools that rented their roofs for solar production. The company chosen installed 300,000 watts of solar panels on three schools with no cost to the school system. In fact, the school system will be collecting $14,000 per year for the roof rental. The program hinges on TVA Green Partners program. Without it, this could not have happened.

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Happy Summer Solstice!

The sunniest day of the year!

For more information about the summer solstice, click here.

Getting to Market with Steve Bank

The Scientific Method for Getting Technology to Market

A Webinar with Steve Blank

Thursday, June 21st
Presentation: 1:00-2:00 pm EDT
Live Q&A Discussion: 2:00-2:30 pm EDT


Join us for an encore broadcast of The Scientific Method for Getting Technology to Market followed by a live Q&A discussion with entrepreneur, Steve Blank.

Great technologies don’t automatically attract users and thrive in the real world. Successful entrepreneur and professor Steve Blank will show how hypothesis-driven discovery and experimentation can turn your innovations into successful products with societal impact. Learn how to hone in on the true value of your technology through early and effective engagement with customers, and see why Silicon Valley startups, corporations like GE, and the National Science Foundation have adopted this methodology to advance their leading innovations.

Be sure to register to participate in the live event. If you attended Mr. Blank’s presentation during the 2012 Summit, then you can opt to join us at 2:00 pm for the live Q&A discussion only.

NOTE: In order to watch the rebroadcast from 1:00 – 2:00 pm, you will need to log into the webinar from a high-speed internet connection. If you experience buffering issues, then we will provide you with a direct link to the recording and a PDF of Mr. Blank’s slides.

This is the second in an intended series of rebroadcasts of practical seminars originally delivered at the 2012 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit. Each seminar focuses on a different core concept or skill that can help transition breakthrough technologies into successful commercial products.

DoD Taps Florida’s Premier Solar PV School for Veterans Training

No fuel trucks to be targets

The Department of Veterans Affairs has recently selected US Solar Institute (USSI) to help train its service members to safely install PV technology.  As the country’s first dedicated, licensed photovoltaic college to receive this distinction, USSI will play an important role in the post-service career training that has become a staple feature of the GI Bill. When you add in solar PV installation training programs like USSI, it becomes clear that the Department of Defense is committed to meeting its target of 25% renewable energy by 2025.
Although USSI has become an official Veterans Affairs partner, it also provides solar PV training to active duty personnel and civilians as well. For a complete list of training courses, visit

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Last Chance to Register for Photovoltaic Systems Training with Gexpro and Jim Dunlop Solar

Gexpro and Jim Dunlop Solar are pleased to announce another photovoltaic systems training program, scheduled for June 27 – 29, 2012 at the Gexpro branch in Nashville, TN.

Course information and registration details are available online at:

Come join us for one of the most informative courses on PV systems available, delivered by Jim Dunlop, a leading industry expert and author of the popular textbook Photovoltaic Systems. Learn about new developments in the PV industry and installation requirements based on the 2011 National Electrical Code, and explore your opportunities in this emerging field. All registrants receive a copy of the Photovoltaic Systems textbook and Photovoltaic Systems Study Guide.

Gexpro (formerly known as GE Supply) was founded by the General Electric Company in 1904, and now a subsidiary of Rexel, the largest electrical distributor in the world. Gexpro is a leading distributor of photovoltaic systems equipment and Gexpro’s Energy Solutions team assists numerous contractors and developers in successfully executing PV projects. For further information about Gexpro products and services, please visit:

Additional classes are being planned for other Gexpro locations across the U.S. For further information or requests for training services, please contact

Photovoltaic Systems Textbook and Training Resource Guide

Jim Dunlop Solar offers discounted pricing on the Photovoltaic Systems textbook for schools and training organizations. Jim personally responds to phone calls and emails from customers concerning the text content, course development and delivery — a value-added service available only from the author that no others provide.

Jim Dunlop Solar also offers the Photovoltaic Systems Training Resource Guide (TRG) for instructors and course developers. This resource package contains 1000 fully-editable PowerPoint slides, most with instructor notes and commentary referencing page numbers in the Photovoltaic Systems text, websites and other resources. It also includes updates for the 2011 NEC and contains over 200 images not found in the Photovoltaic Systems text. This is an indispensible resource, especially for instructors new to teaching about PV systems. A student version of the TRG is available in Adobe PDF format.

Please contact us for a quote on textbooks or the resource guide at: