Following its US$2.3 million grant from the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) SunShot Initiative in September, SolarBridge advised that it had recently received a US$1.75 million grant from the DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). The grant is part of ARPA-E’s 60 cutting-edge research projects that it announced last week, which hold a combined worth of US$156 million and look to improve the way the US produces and uses energy.
SolarBridge will use the grant to perform further research and development for a new electronic technique that is said to improve the output of solar panels. The company claims that the technique is specifically designed for large solar power plants where many solar panels are connected to each other. SolarBridge’s Differential Power Processing (DPP) technology entails correcting the power differences that happen when two solar modules that receive different amounts of sun are connected together.
The company stated that the DPP technology will be smaller and less expensive than current electronic solutions. SolarBridge is collaborating on the project with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
“We are pleased to participate in groundbreaking research that is part of a national clean energy initiative,” said Ron Van Dell, president and CEO of SolarBridge. “From the beginning, SolarBridge’s goal has been to accelerate the adoption of solar energy. The ARPA-E grant will help us make our goal a reality.”