News Center

Local Market Conditions and Policies Strongly Influence Solar PV Pricing

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Differences in local market conditions and policies, and other factors, particularly the size of the system, can lead to wide disparities in what consumers across the United States pay to install solar energy systems on their homes or small businesses. This translates into thousands of dollars difference in the price of comparable solar energy systems around the U.S.

DOE Secretary Helps Usher in New Era of Energy Research at Berkeley Lab

Berkeley Lab's General Purpose Laboratory

Inaugurated today with help from U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Berkeley Lab’s new General Purpose Laboratory will be devoted to flagship centers in materials sciences and energy storage research, as well as to key biosciences programs. Among the building’s new tenants will be the Berkeley Lab site of the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research, or JCESR, a multi-lab program aimed at achieving revolutionary advances in battery performance.

Berkeley Lab Report Quantifies the Financial Impacts of Customer-Sited Photovoltaics on Electric Utilities

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A new report prepared by analysts from Berkeley Lab examines the potential impacts of customer-sited solar photovoltaics (PV) on electric utility profitability and rates. The report shows that these impacts can vary greatly depending upon the specific circumstances of the utility and may be reduced through a variety of regulatory and ratemaking measures.

Interactive Map Reveals Rooftop Reflectance for Five California Cities

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Berkeley Lab scientists use aerial imagery to create an interactive map that displays the solar reflectance (also known as albedo) of individual roofs in Bakersfield, Long Beach, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Jose.

New Studies Find Significant Declines in Price of Rooftop and Utility-Scale Solar

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The price of solar energy in the U.S. continues to fall substantially, according to the latest editions of two annual reports produced by Berkeley Lab. A third Berkeley Lab report, written in collaboration with researchers at Yale University, the University of Texas at Austin and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), shows that local permitting and other regulatory procedures can significantly impact residential photovoltaic (PV) prices.

Cool Roofs in China Can Save Energy and Reduce Emissions

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Working with Chinese researchers, Berkeley Lab has conducted the first comprehensive study of cool roofs in China and concluded that they would be effective in substantially reducing energy use and greenhouse gas emissions in climate zones with hot summers.

Department of Energy’s FLEXLAB Opens Testbeds to Drive Dramatic Increase in Building Efficiency

From left to right, Carla Boragno, Senior VP, Site Services, Genentech; Laurie Giamomona, VP, Customer Service, PG&E; Andrew McAllister, Commissioner, California Energy Commission; Paul Alivisatos, Director, Berkeley Lab; Jes Pedersen, CEO, Webcor Builders (behind Alivisatos); Daniel Poneman, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy (cutting ribbon); Janet Napolitano, President, University of California; Nancy Skinner, Assemblywoman for California's 15th District; Aundra Richards, Site Manager, DOE Berkeley Site Office; Steven Chalk, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy; Ashok Gadgil, Director, Environmental Energy Technologies Division.

The world’s most advanced energy efficiency test bed for buildings is open for business, launched today by U.S. Department of Energy Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman. FLEXLAB is already signing up companies determined to reduce their energy use by testing and deploying the most energy efficient technologies as integrated systems under real-world conditions. The facility includes a rotating test bed to track and test sun exposure impacts, and other high-tech features.

Berkeley Lab Study Highlights Growing Energy Impact of Internet Video Streaming

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How much CO2 was emitted when you streamed that movie from Netflix last night? It’s a question few people think about, but now researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have analyzed the energy usage of home movie viewing. They found that transmitting the bytes across the Internet accounts for the bulk of energy

Berkeley Lab-led Collaboration with China Speeds Development of Green Buildings

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The U.S.–China Clean Energy Research Center Building Energy Efficiency Consortium (CERC-BEE), which launched three years ago has made steady progress toward the research and development of low-energy technologies for buildings, including patent applications and new product launches this year, about 100 articles published, and five demonstration projects in China that validate, fine-tune, and showcase everything from smart windows to advanced lighting controls to microgrids.

Berkeley Lab Launches Building Energy Performance Research Project at New FLEXLAB Testing Facility

The DOE’s David Danielson, Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, was on hand in Berkeley April 14 to tour FLEXLAB™, the Facility for Low Energy experiments in Buildings, run by Berkeley Lab’s Environmental Energy Technologies Division. Danielson and Berkeley Lab Director Paul Alivisatos also met with executives from construction firm Webcor. Webcor’s testing in FLEXLAB will allow its engineers to predict and improve the energy performance for a new building constructed for biotech company, Genentech. A building mockup for Genentech will be studied at different building orientations, specific to the actual construction site. As part of his visit to the Lab, Danielson also toured the Molecular Foundry.