Technology and R&D

Updated: A roundup of venture capital funding in clean energy

Batteries have won the lion’s share of recent cleantech venture capital — but here are some recent funding rounds for fusion, graphene, electrical panels, circuit breakers, geothermal drilling and direct-air capture of CO2.

Morning Brief: California sets example for community solar, transparent graphene electrodes for PV cells

Also in the brief: The never ending saga of Arkansas utilities battling their 2,320 net metering customers, Atom Power raises $17.8 million for a solid-state circuit breaker for commercial and industrial buildings.

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Climeworks just raised $75M to pull CO2 out of the atmosphere

Direct-air capture, along with its mythic sisters, clean coal and carbon capture and sequestration, is a process where CO2 from fossil generators and industrial sources is captured, treated and injected into underground earth formations for permanent storage or for industrial use.

Has the rooftop solar tracking market been created by Point Load Power?

Startup Point Load Power is looking to create the market for rooftop trackers, claiming that the company’s PV Booster, paired with bifacial modules, can generate 70% more energy per panel than ordinary racking.

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Record low solar PPAs in the Southwest mean ‘carbon capture is not going to save coal plants’

Recently approved solar PPAs could spell trouble for proponents of retrofitting the state’s San Juan Generating Station to capture the coal-fired plant’s carbon dioxide emissions.

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PVEL solar module scorecard: In a rush to innovate, some manufacturers ‘overlooked basic quality control’

PV Evolution Labs (PVEL), a test lab for the downstream solar market, just published its PV Module Reliability Scorecard. The lab notes the high level of innovation in the solar module industry and namechecks the market’s reliability leaders — but also observed a resurgence of known failure mechanisms — such as PID.

Morning Brief: Nuclear fusion startup raises $84 million from Temasek and Equinor

Also in the brief: Green hydrogen in Denmark, North Dakota solar on tribal lands, Lime Rock New Energy raises $600 million in growth equity focused on renewable energy tech.

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Startup wants to put solar arrays on wave energy generators, along with wind turbines

Sinn Power of Gauting, Germany combines wave, wind and solar power for the “first floating ocean hybrid platform.”

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Investors bet $27.5 million that Nanotech Energy’s graphene battery breakthrough is the real thing

The startup claims to be “the world’s top supplier of graphene” and plans to release a non-flammable, environmentally friendly lithium battery that can charge “18 times faster than anything that is currently available on the market” — within the next year.

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A PV antenna for beaming solar power from space to Earth

Researchers from the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory have launched the first orbital experiment with space-based solar power. They launched a 12-inch square photovoltaic module that is expected to test the viability of space-based solar power systems converting sunlight to microwaves outside the atmosphere.

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