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Highlighting the increased interest in green construction this year, green-building materials company Serious Materials announced on Tuesday that it has raised $60 million in its third round of funding. The round represents one of the largest U.S. venture-capital deals –- and the largest energy-efficiency deal –- […] Read more »

Sungevity, a Berkeley-based startup that uses Internet and satellite images to reduce the cost of installing solar power on homes, says it’s ready to take on the rest of the state. The company, which has focused mainly on installing solar in Northern California so far, announced […] Read more »

Batteries for powertools and lawn equipment are increasingly looking like the gateway to electric vehicles for the energy-storage industry. Three-year-old battery startup Imara Corp. on Monday started selling its first product, battery cells for power tools and gardening equipment, about a year before it plans to […] Read more »

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Solar panels are getting cheaper, and as prices decline, companies are looking for ways to reduce manufacturing costs to stay competitive. Here’s the latest innovation from Applied Materials: on Monday the chip and solar equipment maker announced two new technologies that it claims can reduce the […] Read more »

In news highlighting that solar software is getting smarter, solar software startup Fat Spaniel Technologies is moving beyond just monitoring solar projects. The San Jose, Calif.-based solar software company plans to announce on Tuesday that it has developed a set of software called Lifecycle Management solutions […] Read more »

Solar startup 1366 Technologies on Monday plans to announce that two technologies that boost the efficiency of multicrystalline-silicon solar cells are officially available. The company told us back in July that it had signed an unnamed first customer for one of the technologies, which textures multicrystalline-silicon […] Read more »

As with most electronics, solar panels lose efficiency when the temperature increases — and that’s particularly problematic considering the panels are usually installed where they can catch the most sun. SunModular, a young solar-component startup, hopes to help solve that problem with a technology that keeps […] Read more »

Most solar panels are strung together like Christmas tree lights, so that if one panel stops working, performs poorly or ends up in the shade, the whole string is affected. To address this problem, 2-year-old startup eIQ Energy came out of stealth mode Monday night and […] Read more »

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Policymakers, utilities and renewable energy developers agree: The U.S. is in dire need of transmission improvements. The grid is aging, with many transformers approaching or surpassing their design life, and a lack of maintenance and investment has left the elderly infrastructure overstrained and prone to failure. […] Read more »

In another sign that greentech investments could be back on the rise, organic electronics company Plextronics said today it has raised $14 million in financing. Pittsburgh, Penn.-based Plextronics has developed technology to make conductive inks and materials for printed electronics, specifically for organic plastic solar cells […] Read more »

It’s official: Long-awaited clean-energy manufacturing tax credits are really happening, finally. The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Department of Energy on Thursday announced a program awarding $2.3 billion in tax credits for clean-energy equipment manufacturers. While there are already some tax credits for […] Read more »

As we all know, cell phones no longer just make calls — many act as web devices, navigators, cameras, music players, game consoles, and in weirder circumstances carpenter’s levels and whoopee cushions. But as consumers have called on their phones to do more than ever before, […] Read more »

It looks like financing for solar projects may be starting to pick up again. Solar installer Borrego Solar Systems is set to announce on Monday that it will offer power-purchase agreements (PPAs) — contracts that provide the upfront financing of a solar-power system in exchange for […] Read more »

Last year’s oil spike feels like a distant memory, but to remind you, oil prices surpassed $147 per barrel last July, with gasoline prices above $4 per gallon. But if you think that was bad, feel lucky you weren’t living in the Caribbean at the time. […] Read more »

Solar startup 1366 Technologies received its first order this week from “a major German solar developer,” Craig Lund, director of business development for the Lexington, Mass.-based company, said today at the Intersolar North America conference in San Francisco. 1366 has developed technology that can give solar […] Read more »

A year ago, it seemed like gigawatt-sized solar factories were just around the corner, with companies such as Sharp and Royal Dutch Shell subsidiary Showa Shell Sekiyu unveiling plans to build 1 GW thin-film solar plants. And back then, predictions like the one from Anish Tolia, […] Read more »

The enormous task of setting smart grid standards has been at the top of the industry’s list for months. Now there’s a similar type of effort underway for data specifically related to monitoring solar. An industry group dubbed the SunSpec Alliance will officially launch on Tuesday […] Read more »

Thin-film startup SoloPower announced today that CEO Homayoun Talieh has left his position, though he will remain on the company’s board of directors. The announcement came two months after Vice President of Research Rommel Noufi — whose hire SoloPower bragged about last year — exited the […] Read more »

Thin-film solar startup Nanosolar isn’t exactly known for being shy. The San Jose, Calif.-based company has attracted plenty of attention –- as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in funding -– for claims that its technology can produce highly efficient copper-indium-gallium-diselenide panels for less than […] Read more »

Cleantech investment is on the rise again, according to two reports released this week, hitting $1.2 billion in the second quarter. “Cleantech venture investment has rebounded moderately after free-falling for two consecutive quarters,” said Brian Fan, senior director of research for the Cleantech Group, in a […] Read more »

For cleantech companies, climate change has been a big deal for some time. But it’s officially become a major mainstream business issue, according to a new PricewaterhouseCoopers report, “Capitalizing On a Climate of Change,” that says energy and climate policies are influencing the way all companies […] Read more »

We knew that cleantech startups were getting less venture-capital funding, but it looks like later-stage companies are really suffering. At the Financing the Cleantech Vision conference hosted by Thomson Reuters’ Venture Capital Journal in Palo Alto, Calif., on Thursday, Virgin Green Fund partner Anup Jacob said […] Read more »

Cleantech investor Steve Westly, managing partner of The Westly Group and former California state controller, is at it again. In a keynote speech at the Thomson Reuters “Financing the Cleantech Vision” conference in Palo Alto, Calif., on Thursday, Westly said that after a major dry period, […] Read more »

The deals keep coming for solar thermal startup eSolar, indicating confidence from utilities –- but also increasing pressure on the Pasadena, Calif.-based company to deliver quickly. The startup on Thursday announced plans to build a 92-megawatt plant in Lancaster, Calif. It has signed a deal to […] Read more »

As the world’s largest solar-panel producer for the last two years, China already is a major solar player. But now, some industry experts say, it’s expanding from being mainly a solar panel supplier to also becoming a substantial customer. “China, which already is important in production, […] Read more »

Looks like California’s going to be getting a whole lot of solar power soon. After a year of discussions, the California Public Utilities Commission on Thursday not only approved Southern California Edison’s 250-megawatt rooftop solar project -– but doubled it. To jog your memory, the Rosemead, […] Read more »

It’s a question we hear all the time: Why doesn’t California have a German-style feed-in tariff for the solar industry? German utilities pay a high price for any solar electricity fed into the grid, with the cost distributed among the country’s ratepayers. The much-esteemed policy made […] Read more »

Solar from space: It may sound like a bad sci-fi movie, but a growing number of companies think it could solve the world’s energy crisis. Among them is Everett, Wash.-based PowerSat Corp., which said today it’s filed a provisional patent for two technologies it claims could […] Read more »

When you fly into a city at night, most of the lights you see through the window are high-intensity discharge (HID) lights used in stadiums, factories, airports and street lights. HID lighting makes up a $10 billion global market annually, with some 120 million HID lamps […] Read more »

Take your laptop outside, and you’re likely to find yourself squinting at the screen. The glare is even more pronounced with mobile computing devices, which users usually view downward (like a piece of paper), catching more light than when the screen is vertical. But putting brighter […] Read more »

Concentrating solar-thermal company eSolar hasn’t been shy about taking on new projects. The Pasadena, Calif.-based company on Thursday announced another one: an agreement to develop a 92-megawatt plant in southern New Mexico with Princeton, N.J.-based energy company NRG Energy. The companies say they are ready to […] Read more »

With all the attention on electric vehicles these days, laptop battery manufacturers are rushing to get in on the action. The latest is Massachusetts-based Boston-Power, which on Monday unveiled a new battery, called Swing, for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. The company hasn’t released any details […] Read more »

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