U.S. Solar Photovoltaic Manufacturing: Industry Trends, Global Competition, Federal Support

Description:

The most widely used solar technology involves photovoltaic (PV) solar modules, which draw on semiconducting materials to convert sunlight into electricity. By year-end 2011, the total number of grid-connected PV systems nationwide reached almost 215,000. Domestic demand is met both by imports and by about 100 U.S. manufacturing facilities. The competitiveness of solar PV as a source of electric generation in the United States will likely be adversely affected both by the expiration of tax provisions and by the rapid development of shale gas, which has the potential to lower the cost of gas-fired power generation and reduce the cost-competitiveness of solar power, particularly as an energy source for utilities. In light of these developments, the ability to build a significant U.S. production base for PV equipment is in question.

Creator(s): Platzer, Michaela D.
Location(s): United States
Creation Date: May 30, 2012
Partner(s):
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection(s):
Congressional Research Service Reports
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Past 30 days: 24
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Creator (Author):
Platzer, Michaela D.

Specialist in Industrial Organization and Business

Publisher Info:
Place of Publication: Washington D.C.
Date(s):
  • Creation: May 30, 2012
Coverage:
Place
United States
Description:

The most widely used solar technology involves photovoltaic (PV) solar modules, which draw on semiconducting materials to convert sunlight into electricity. By year-end 2011, the total number of grid-connected PV systems nationwide reached almost 215,000. Domestic demand is met both by imports and by about 100 U.S. manufacturing facilities. The competitiveness of solar PV as a source of electric generation in the United States will likely be adversely affected both by the expiration of tax provisions and by the rapid development of shale gas, which has the potential to lower the cost of gas-fired power generation and reduce the cost-competitiveness of solar power, particularly as an energy source for utilities. In light of these developments, the ability to build a significant U.S. production base for PV equipment is in question.

Physical Description:

32 pages.

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Subject(s):
Partner:
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection:
Congressional Research Service Reports
Identifier:
Resource Type: Report
Format: Text