Energy Department to launch prize challenge to drive down solar costs



To kick off the SunShot Initiative’s Grand Challenge Summit and Peer Review, the Energy Department today announced SunShot Catalyst, a new prize competition to spur the rapid creation and development of products and solutions that address near-term challenges in the U.S. solar marketplace. Intended to tackle market barriers and address technical problems that can be solved through automation, algorithms, data, and software, SunShot Catalyst will leverage the reach and power of online crowdsourcing to generate ideas, spur business innovations and develop prototypes.

The competition will also enable American entrepreneurs to launch cutting-edge solar companies that can address some of the most relevant and time-sensitive market challenges by encouraging teams to engage and forge partnerships across the nation’s growing networks of technology mentors, incubators, and accelerators.

The SunShot Summit, taking place this week in Anaheim, California, will bring together more than 800 solar energy leaders from across industry, academia, the policymaking community, and the Department’s national laboratories to highlight the recent strides made by the solar industry to significantly reduce costs and deploy solar energy nationwide. The Summit will also help illuminate the paths forward to meeting the ambitious SunShot Initiative affordability goal of cost-competitive utility-scale solar energy by 2020, while promoting growth in the solar market and strengthening America’s energy security.

SunShot Catalyst