U.S. Energy Department offers funding opportunities to advance solar photovoltaic

Solar energy developers can tap into the more than $9 million in funding available through the federal SunShot initiative, the Energy Department said.

The funding opportunity targets development projects aimed at improving the reliability and durability of solar photovoltaic technologies.

“Eligible projects will examine the performance of PV modules and develop accelerated tests to better understand how solar modules change over time and achieve improved lifetime performance of the modules,” the Energy Department said in its Tuesday soliciting announcement.

A report from the International Energy Agency found solar energy resources could combine to become the world’s largest source of electricity by 2050, while at the same time offsetting more carbon dioxide emissions than the United State currently puts out.

The so-called SunShot initiative is meant to make solar power competitive with rival sources of energy.

U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said solar energy is becoming an increasingly affordable clean energy option in the United States through the program.

The United States has 15.9 megawatts of installed solar power, enough to meet the energy demands of more than 3.2 million average households. Topaz, the largest solar power plant in the world, came online last month in the California desert.