Energy and Climate

About Photovoltaics at Sandia

Sandia’s solar photovoltaic (PV) work is focused on developing cost-effective, reliable photovoltaic energy systems and accelerating the integration of PV technology in the United States and globally. The lab’s PV department provides the technical lead for systems integration and balance-of-systems manufacturing technologies as well as technical support to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in deployment and validation of PV systems for federal agencies, utilities, and other institutional users. Sandia assists industry and users by providing technical assistance, accurate performance measurements, component development and improvement, and system evaluation. A major thrust of the department is to evaluate and improve the performance, reliability, and cost effectiveness of systems and balance-of-systems components.

Sandia’s PV research staff work collaboratively with DOE’s Solar Energy Technologies Program, the U.S. photovoltaic industry, other government agencies and national laboratories, and international organizations to increase the worldwide use of PV power systems by reducing cost, improving reliability, increasing performance, removing barriers, and growing markets.

Advanced Research & Development

Today’s energy world requires dynamic, innovative thinking and the flexibility to rapidly accommodate changing market demands. The solar photovoltaics (PV) industry has advanced significantly in recent years, yet the PV world of tomorrow has only been imagined. Sandia National Laboratories contributes to the advancement of PV technology through research in advanced PV technologies, such as III-V thin cells, and advanced small and thin c-Si. The lab also offers extensive experience and expertise in systems integration, micro-fabrication, MEMS and microsystem technologies, semiconductor device technology, and advanced PV systems analysis.

Learn More

Grid Integration

The Grid Integration Program at Sandia National Laboratories addresses technical barriers to large-scale deployment of solar photovoltaic (PV) generation in grid-tied power systems. Sandia’s Grid Integration research focuses on three primary tasks related to high-penetration PV:

  • Expanding and disseminating technical knowledge and understanding related to grid performance, reliability, forecasting, and costs of integration
  • Developing integrated solutions to optimize the balance between energy generation, storage, and consumption through new technologies and advanced controls, at local and regional levels
  • Performance standards and codes

Learn More

Modeling & Analysis

The Photovoltaic (PV) Modeling and Analysis team addresses technical challenges to simulating the performance of PV systems in the field exposed to different weather and environmental conditions. Sandia organizes its efforts in three primary thrusts:

1. Industry Outreach and Technical Leadership

2. Model Algorithm Development

3. Model Validation

Learn More

Test & Evaluation

The solar photovoltaics (PV) Test & Evaluation (T&E) program at Sandia National Laboratories is a critical part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Energy Technologies Program (SETP) technology pipeline.  The lab supports SETP’s goals by defining and applying procedures for evaluating performance, supporting development of new and improvement of existing technologies, and providing skilled testing and evaluation of all PV components, including cells, modules, inverters, and Balance-of-Systems (BOS).  Sandia also conducts full system testing, through which the interactions and reliability of total PV systems can be evaluated, and contributes to the development of critical national and international PV codes and standards.  The goals of Sandia’s T&E program include improved PV system performance, reduced levelized cost of energy (LCOE), and an enhanced market for PV technologies.

Learn More

PV Systems Reliability

Sandia recognizes that even the best components and materials need to work in concert with other elements to ensure the quality and reliability of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. The PV Systems Reliability program at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) evaluates the reliability of PV systems as a function of design, installation, components, and the application. The focus in the lab’s reliability testing is on how it improves the design and composition of total PV systems. Each component is evaluated with respect to how it performs and interacts within a given system, not just how it functions independently. In order to be classified as reliable, elements must meet intended performance metrics, under specific environmental conditions, at a given point in time.

Learn More

Solar Market Transformation

Sandia’s Market Transformation efforts exist at the intersection of technology, economics, and policy & regulations. We address market barriers and transactional costs of solar projects across the United States. This large market is actually a patchwork of solar markets on a state-by-state level. Despite excellent solar resources throughout much of the country, many states lack a cohesive framework that can support a strong solar market. Sandia’s Market Transformation activities address policy and regulatory barriers, utility business and operational challenges, and a range of business models and financing approaches.

The Market Transformation effort is active in regulatory/policy, codes, and standards; utility operations and programs; finance; permitting, inspection, and interconnection; installation; and siting.

Learn More

Solar Resource Assessment

Today’s energy world requires dynamic, innovative thinking and the flexibility to rapidly accommodate changing market demands. The solar photovoltaics (PV) industry has advanced significantly in recent years, yet the PV world of tomorrow has only been imagined. Sandia National Laboratories contributes to the advancement of PV technology through research in advanced PV technologies, such as III-V thin cells, and advanced small and thin c-Si. The lab also offers extensive experience and expertise in systems integration, micro-fabrication, MEMS and microsystem technologies, semiconductor device technology, and advanced PV systems analysis.

Learn More

Photovoltaic and Grid Integration Manager
Charles Hanley
505.844.4435
cjhanle at sandia.gov
PV Testing and Evaluation PV Systems Reliability, Manufacturing, and Diagnostics Modeling and Analysis PV Grid and Systems Integration
Bruce King
505.284.6571
bhking at sandia.gov
Jennifer Granata
505.844.8813
jegrana at sandia.gov
Joshua Stein
505.845.0936
jsstein at sandia.gov
Abraham Ellis
505.844.7717
aellis at sandia.gov
Standard & Codes SEGIS Solar Market Transformation Arc-Fault Detection and Mitigation
Abraham Ellis
505.844.7717
aellis at sandia.gov
Abraham Ellis
505.844.7717
aellis at sandia.gov
Roger Hill
505.844.6111
rrhill at sandia.gov
Jay Johnson
505.284.9586
jjohns2 at sandia.gov
Distributed Energy Technologies Laboratory PV Systems Evaluation Laboratory
Sigifredo Gonzalez
505.845.8942
sgonza at sandia.gov
Bruce King
505.284.6571
bhking at sandia.gov

Comments are closed.



Feedback

Feedback