Super efficient perovskites are dazzling solar cell researchers

There’s a lot of excitement about a class of materials called perovskites that promise to deliver efficient and cheap solar cells. In a pursuit to lower production cost, one team at the Northern Illinois University recently demonstrated the possibility of replacing gold with nickel to conducting electricity.

Lessons from a solar fraud case in India

A fraud case has heated up political debates in the southern Indian state of Kerala, where two people have been arrested for allegedly swindling doctors by promising to install solar panels but took the money and ran instead.

Video: The trends behind the year of clean energy turbulence

Global clean energy investing dropped by 22 percent in the first quarter of 2013 says Bloomberg New Energy Finance CEO Michael Liebreich. In his keynote address for Bloomberg’s energy conference this week, he unpacked some trends in the global financing of next generation energy technology.

Post Sandy wish list: solar-powered public chargers

A Serbian startup called Strawberry Energy has a new design for its solar powered public chargers and recently installed its eighth “Strawberry Tree” in Serbia. In the wake of the Sandy-induced power crunch, I’d love to see some of these in a public areas in cities in the U.S.

India faces growing pains for its solar market

India has emerged as as a potentially huge market for solar energy development. It also is experiencing the growing pains of cultivating a new type of energy development that relies heavily on government help and faces unforeseen challenges.

Solar startup Amonix to start layoffs

Amonix, which makes concentrating solar photovoltaic tech that uses mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto solar cells, will cut 76 workers across its offices in California, according to a Dow Jones Venture Wire report.

What you should know from the new Solyndra report

The dark cloud of Solyndra might have lifted a bit, but, yes, it’s still here. Solyndra’s Chief Restructuring Officer, Todd Neilson, an outside bankruptcy expert and former FBI agent, has just completed and published a 204-page report on what-the-heck happened with Solyndra.

Another lawsuit to protect critters from solar farms

Three environmental group on Monday filed suit against the federal government over a proposed solar farm in California, contending that the government has failed in its duty to ensure the project would not pose a significant harm to wildlife.

Wesley Clark on how to sell solar to a tough crowd

Clean energy will drive the next wave of economic growth, and will be the first development mechanism in the U.S. since we won the Cold War, said retired General Wesley Clark during a keynote at solar conference PV America West in San Jose Monday.

Should utilities invest in solar tech manufacturing?

Utilities don’t often invest in new tech manufacturing, but then, California’s PG&E isn’t your average utility. PG&E has requested state approval to enable it to invest $9.9 million of taxpayer money into a solar engineering and manufacturing service center run by commercialization startup SVTC Technologies.

How practical is a solar-powered car?

If you like the sun, and you like cars, then I’m guessing you’d love to have a solar-powered car, right? This trick works well for chocolate and peanut butter, but not so well for garlic bread and strawberries. So how compatible are cars with solar energy?

10 things that sold at Solyndra’s auction

Bankrupt solar panel maker Solyndra held a two-day auction for part of its assets last week in an attempt to recoup some of its losses, and reportedly drew thousands of people looking for both bargains and gear with Solyndra logos. Here’s 10 things that were bought.

On the ground with clean power in India

Power companies in India are funding both solar and wind as a way to add more power generation, as many areas in India are facing blackouts. Vineeth Vijayaraghavan watches cleantech in India closely, and here’s what he’s been reading this week.

What utilities really think about solar

Here’s a snapshot of what utilities really think about solar: it’s still too expensive but more consumers are starting to want it (but not necessary willing to pay for it). How can we get more utilities to invest in solar?

Solar struggles: Stirling Energy Systems files for bankruptcy

Solar thermal company Stirling Energy Systems has filed for bankruptcy, according to Renewable Energy World. Stirling Energy Systems developed solar concentrators based on stirling engines, which use the sun’s heat to produce electricity, and planned to build projects to sell the power to utilities.

Solyndra’s hearing: Introducing DOE Loan Chief Jonathan Silver

While DOE Loan Chief Jonathan Silver will testify before the House Energy Committee, Solyndra’s execs have decided to skip tomorrow’s hearing, and say they’ll testify the week of September 19th. We’ve interviewed Silver many times, particularly on Solyndra, including via this video in April 2011:

The under-the-radar hot solar markets for investors

Looking at the internal rates of returns (IRR), which basically considers the capital investment needed and determines how profitable an investment in a project will be, the top solar markets of tomorrow, according to Lux Research, will be: New Jersey, Portugal, Australia, Italy, and India.

The importance of social for greentech

The summer of 2011 has (arguably) produced a bubble around social media, with valuations for social media companies soaring. Will any of that social magic rub off on consumer-facing clean-power and energy-efficiency technologies, like electric cars, solar panels or home energy management systems?

Two New Ways to Power Your Smartphone With the Sun

In honor of Earth Day, I’ve been testing a couple of solar chargers from Scosche and Choice Solar. The good news is that charger prices have dropped significantly. But their capabilities vary, so it’s important to select one that meets your needs.

Solar-Powered Steam Courtesy of Thermata

The heat and rays of the sun aren’t just being harnessed for electricity. An early stage startup called Thermata, backed by Bill Gross’ Idealab, is looking to build a business around solar-powered boilers that produce steam for industrial processes.

Solar Water Heating Draws New Money

Solar water heater market may not be brand new, but it’s attracting a lot of new comers in recent years as more state and local incentives crop up. Sunnovations, which launched its first water heating system last year has raised an A round funding.

Nielsen: Android Surges to No. 1 in Recent Sales

Nielsen is adding its voice to the chorus of research firms confirming the ascension of Android. Nielsen said among recent acquirers of smartphones in the last six months through August, Android was the top platform with 32 percent of purchases, followed by the iPhone and RIM.

Alta Devices Hiring, Piling on Patent Apps

Alta Devices, a secretive thin-film solar startup backed by venture firms including Kleiner Perkins, Technology Partners and Crosslink Capital, has begun to expand its staff and rack up a pile of patent applications.

MEMC to Buy Solar Startup Solaicx

The drumbeat of consolidation in the solar industry continues this morning, as silicon wafer maker and solar project developer MEMC Electronic Materials (s WFR) has just announced plans to acquire Solaicx, an 8-year-old maker of silicon wafers for solar cells.

Daily Sprout

An Open Letter to Ban Ki Moon on Climate Change: Neal Dikeman calls for Christiana Figueres of Costa Rica to become the next UNFCCC Secretariat. Interesting idea — Cleantech Blog.

Opera Mini Arrives on Android — Who Should Get It?

Opera Mini 5 hit the Android Market this morning, offering another browser choice. It’s a solid beta effort, but how does it compare to the native Android browser? And who should use it? I can think of one situation where it has a definite advantage.

First Solar Beats on Revenue, Profit But Margins Slump

First Solar (s fslr) posted stronger than expected revenue and profit in the final quarter of 2010, defying some of the bearishness that had hounded the stock in recent months and suggesting that the company is managing its way through a time of rising competition from more efficient solar modules. But weaker margins and unchanged guidance are giving some investors pause.

Daily Sprout

Reva’s Low-Volume EV Scheme: Reva Electric Car Co., the Indian automaker developing an electric vehicle with General Motors (s GM), plans to…

Amonix Snaps Up SunWorks Solar

Amonix, a developer of 20-ton concetrating photovoltaic solar systems for utility-scale projects, has bought San Francisco startup Sunworks Solar, a developer of…

Daily Sprout

Meet the Tesla Roadster Sport: Model updates to the Tesla Roadster for 2010, including push button controls and a touch screen for…

Daily Sprout

Green Consumer Habits in the Recession: American consumers, with their tendency to make green purchasing choices based on personal self-interest, have more…

Daily Sprout

Fisker Automotive Picks EU Distributor: Plug-in hybrid car startup Fisker Automotive has picked a large distributor to sell its vehicles in Europe…

Daily Sprout

Climate-Security Connection: National security fears loom large for politicians who might otherwise oppose carbon legislation. That’s why John Kerry, rather than Barbara…

Daily Sprout

EU Clean Energy Growth, Now Tracked Online: “The European Commission this week launched an open-access online tool to monitor the development of…

Daily Sprout

Free Trade and Climate Change: Making trade more free could lead to more carbon dioxide emissions as a result of increased economic…

Daily Sprout

Evolution Solar Shopping for Startups: Evolution Solar has announced that it is searching for a suitable acquisition of an existing solar company,…

What to read on the GigaOM network

Will the Microsoft-Google battle move to energy data? (Earth2Tech) Does Oracle have anything to do with the upcoming Java apps store? (OStatic)…

Daily Sprout

Solar Swing and a Miss: JA Solar (s JASO) has reported a net loss of $23.3 million on $33 million in revenue…

Daily Sprout

Solar-Powered Cell Phone: Japan’s No. 2 wireless carrier, KDDI Corp., said today it will start selling a waterproof, solar-powered cell phone made…

Daily Sprout

Obama Wants Energy Efficiency Rules, Pronto: President Barack Obama ordered the DOE yesterday to immediately draft overdue standards for making a variety…

Daily Sprout

Raising the Bar on Emissions Targets: “President-elect Obama’s goal of reducing emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 falls short of the response…

Los Angeles Sets 10% Solar Goal for 2020

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa unveiled a proposal this morning to meet 10 percent of the city’s energy needs with solar power by 2020. The announcement was made at Solar Integrated Technologies, an company contracted last month to supply thin-film solar panels for a 1.1 megawatt project by Oregon utility Portland General Electric.

CalCEF Angel Fund Backs Solar, Biofuels, Lighting

This morning the CalCEF Angel Fund say it has invested in three firms — efficient-lighting startup HID Labs, biofuels company Allopartis Biotechnologies, and an undisclosed solar investment that is adapting chip manufacturing to make cheap, efficient solar cells.

The Daily Sprout

PG&E Gives Away Solar to 25 Schools: The utility has selected 25 California schools to receive 1.3 kilowatt solar generation systems, valued…

LG Swaps Plasma TVs for Solar Panels

LG Electronics said today that it will convert a decommissioned plasma panel display manufacturing plant to make silicon solar panels. LG says retooling the plant will cost 220 billion won ($168 million).

Seesmic Raising More Money

Seesmic, the San Francisco-based video startup led by French serial entrepreneur Loic Le Meur, is raising additional funding from entrepreneurs and angel…

GigaOm In The Daily Deal

The Daily Deal has a piece on the recent trend of venture capital investments in the blogs and they look at Huffington…

Treo 650, 700, Flickr Fun

As you may have heard, it would appear the Treo 700 is going to be announced tomorrow Monday September 26th, 2005.…

VoIP Saves Money: Newsflash

Networking Pipeline: VoIP Can Save Enterprises From $9,600 To $28,000 Per Site. Survey also finds that ShoreTel and Nortel offer the lowest…

Dear Silicon Santa…

I want Apple to add a “SIP address” field to the Mac OS X Address Book. I want everybody I know to…

Japan’s The Super Phone

Forbes has a fascinating look at NTT DoCoMo and the changes inside the company, and its decision to embrace open standards. The…