June 03, 2011

Albany NanoTech Awarded $225K From National Grid

By: by Robin K. Cooper, The Business Review


University at Albany's nanotechnology research center has been awarded $225,000 from National Grid that will be used to create a solar power system control and monitoring center.

The College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, located on the Albany NanoTech research campus, will develop, install and demonstrate the solar monitoring center to assist photovoltaic system designers and installers with data to accelerate the construction of roof-mounted solar conversion systems.

CNSE will work with EYP Energy and Alteris Renewables to create the new Photovoltaic Control Monitoring Center on the UAlbany campus. The project is part of a $1.35 million solar demonstration program to analyze photovoltaic technology. The goal is to develop low-cost methods that will entice more businesses and residences to install solar energy system.

Ken Daly, president of National Grid's New York market said the impact of the $225,000 grant will spread well beyond the Capital Region.

CNSE's senior vice president and CEO Alain Kaloyeros said National Grid's award expands the research center's growing portfolio in solar technology.

The grant comes on the heels of a $58 million federal grant that will help underwrite CNSE's plan to create a $500 million U.S. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium in conjunction with Sematech, a consortium of computer chip makers and suppliers.

Pradeep Haldar, vice president of clean energy at CNSE has called the solar industry the largest and fastest-growing technology sector with a 30 percent compound annual growth rate.

CNSE, which has grown from 72 employees a decade ago to more than 2,600, has partnered with more than 250 private companies and organizations who conduct nanotechnology research at the college.

Kaloyeros has said that CNSE will use the same growth model that he used to develop this region into a hub for solar technology research and development.