The solar power revolution has arrived and it’s cooler than you ever thought was possible. The solar industry has been growing rapidly over the last few years, yet in many markets it still remains under-penetrated. This is mainly due to cost, which is often higher than people want to spend on energy. Solar power was expensive and not very popular just a few years ago. But now the price of solar panels has come down significantly. In fact cutting edge panels are at 50cents per Watt, and costs are getting even lower. Solar Energy is cheaper right now than most people think – and it’s about to get even cheaper…
In the U.S., solar power is cheaper than coal.
That’s the headline from a new report from the Department of Energy, which shows that utility-scale solar plants are already competitive with natural gas and coal in many parts of the country.
In fact, solar energy costs have fallen so far that even rooftop systems are becoming cost competitive with traditional electricity sources in many locations.
The report is good news for renewable energy advocates, who have been pushing for more investment in alternative energy sources — particularly solar — as a way to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change. In recent years, they’ve had some success: The Obama administration has made several investments in clean energy technology and has helped spur growth in wind and solar power through tax credits and other incentives.
The cost of solar energy is declining, and it will continue to decline.
The cost of solar energy is declining, and it will continue to decline. In fact, the cost of solar energy has declined by more than 80 percent since 2009, according to the U.S. Department of Energy — making it a more affordable option than ever before.
The price of solar panels themselves has also decreased dramatically over the years due to increased demand and technological advancements in manufacturing processes. The average price of solar panels has fallen from $76 per watt in 1977 to $0.36 per watt today. This means that the cost to install a solar system has dropped accordingly; in fact, the average cost for an installation is now just $3 per watt. This represents a decrease of nearly 90 percent since 1977!
Solar power is getting more powerful
In the past decade, researchers at universities across the country have been working on ways to make solar cells more efficient and less expensive. They’ve developed new materials and techniques that could help make solar power cheaper and more efficient.
These innovations include:
New kinds of materials used in solar cells called perovskites — which are often made from cheap materials like tin oxide or lead selenide — can boost efficiency by as much as 30 percent with little loss in stability or lifespan.
Better manufacturing processes that allow manufacturers to create high-quality silicon wafers that can be used with existing semiconductor technology instead of specialized equipment. This means lower costs for manufacturers and consumers alike.
Solar is cheaper, more powerful and available to more people than ever before
Solar energy has become more affordable and accessible than ever before. The solar power revolution has brought the cost of solar down by more than 90% since the early 2000s, making it an increasingly attractive option for consumers.
In fact, the cost of solar is so low that many homeowners are now able to save thousands of dollars on their electric bills each year. Add in the fact that there’s no monthly electricity bill to pay and you can see why so many people are jumping on board with this clean energy option.