Tuesday, April 29, 2008

5 Cent kWh Solar Electricity On The Horizon

WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A new patents pending solar energy system will soon make it possible to produce electricity at a wholesale cost of 5 cents per kWh (kilowatt hour). This price is competitive with the wholesale cost of producing electricity using fossil fuels and a fraction of the current cost of solar energy.

XCPV (Xtreme Concentrated Photovoltaics), a system that concentrates the equivalent of more than 1,600 times the sun’s energy onto the world’s most efficient solar cells, was announced today by SUNRGI, a solar energy system designer and developer, at the National Energy Marketers Association’s 11th Annual Global Energy Forum in Washington, DC. The technology will enable power companies, businesses, and residents to produce electricity from solar energy at a lower cost than ever before.

“Solar Power at 5 cents per kWh would be a world-changing breakthrough,” said Craig Goodman, president, National Energy Marketers Association. “It would make solar generation of electricity as affordable as generation from coal, natural gas or other non-renewable sources, without requiring a subsidy.”

“In a little more than a year we were able to develop and successfully test XCPV,” said Robert S. (Bob) Block, co-founder and SUNRGI principal. “We expect the SUNRGI system to become available for both on- and off-grid power applications, worldwide, in twelve to fifteen months.”

What differentiates SUNRGI’s XCPV system from any other solar energy system includes: a proprietary, integrated low profile technology for concentrating sunlight; a proprietary technology and methodology for cooling solar cells; a low cost, modular system optimized for mass-production; less land area or “roof top” requirements than typical solar energy systems; a technology roadmap for continuous improvement; low-cost field installation; and, a custom-designed system for easy operation and maintenance.

Monday, April 28, 2008

BioSolar Ships Samples Of Breakthrough Solar PV Material

SANTA CLARITA, CA--(Marketwire - April 28, 2008) - BioSolar™, Inc. (OTCBB: BSRC), developer of a breakthrough technology to produce bio-based materials from renewable plant sources that reduce the cost of photovoltaic solar cells, today announced that the company has shipped its BioBacksheet™ samples to a select group of manufacturers for their evaluation in several regions of the country. In an era of record high oil prices, the company's new bio-based product provides a cost effective alternative to petroleum-based backsheets currently in use, and has been actively sought by manufacturers as a component of their finished solar cells.

"This is a very exciting first step to market," said Dr. David Lee, BioSolar's CEO. "It has been our company's mission to deliver an economically viable 'green' product. Not only will the use of our new BioBacksheet product allow solar cell manufacturers to reduce cost in an extremely competitive environment, but they will be doing it in a manner that is environmentally responsible. We believe that as consumers demand more 'green' products, solar cell manufacturers will place an even greater value on products such as ours."

Global Solar Energy Joins Solar America Initiative Project

TUCSON, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Global Solar Energy, a solar industry leader that manufactures highly-efficient thin-film solar cells for glass modules or flexible material products, today announced Dow Building Solutions, a business unit of The Dow Chemical Company, has invited Global Solar to participate in its U.S. Department of Energy Solar America Initiative (SAI) project to help create innovative building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) products. As a part of its SAI program, Dow is creating a flexible solar roof shingle, and has made Global Solar a key team member in its development.

“We are collaborating with Global Solar Energy because throughout our search for a solar material provider, it was the only company able to supply a qualifying flexible Copper Indium Gallium diSelenide (CIGS) material that meets our needs and the requirements of the SAI,” said Bob Cleereman, senior director of Solar & Structural Technology with Dow Building Solutions. “CIGS has proven to be the most efficient, cost-effective thin-film technology for BIPV applications, and by teaming up with Global Solar we are working with an industry leader. Global Solar is the only company in full-scale production of CIGS cells on flexible substrates, and has achieved a record-setting average 10 percent solar cell efficiency, meeting SAI’s requirements.”

The SAI is comprised of companies, laboratories, universities and non-profit organizations. As part of the initiative, Dow is participating in the Technology Pathway Partnership, which was designed to accelerate the commercialization of U.S.-produced solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. Global Solar Energy replaced Dow’s original PV material provider in this program.

“Based on its years of experience Global Solar will be an intrinsically valuable team member in advancing our BIPV product development and meeting the demand for new solar energy applications,” said Patricia Nugent, program manager for Dow Building Solutions. “A flexible PV roof shingle is one of our most exciting projects, and Global Solar’s technology and expertise will be a truly valuable contribution to our development of that product. Together, Dow and Global Solar are advancing the market for BIPV applications in the design of energized commercial and residential building materials.”

“By collaborating with Dow, Global Solar is at the forefront of the emerging BIPV market, which is a bright future for the worldwide solar energy industry,” said Mike Gering, CEO of Global Solar Energy. “Our CIGS solar cells and solar strings offer the most efficient, cost-effective option for BIPV applications, which offer greater flexibility to architects and builders to meet emerging energy efficiency standards and lower the cost of solar installations. With Dow, we are opening a new realm of product innovation for development of BIPV and the future of the energy construction market.”

The mission of the SAI is to create solar electricity cost competitiveness with grid electricity by 2015. The use of flexible CIGS thin-film technologies in building-integrated applications is a key component to that effort, helping lower the cost of solar electricity so that it is cost-competitive across all U.S. market sectors. Decentralized energy supplies such as PV diversifies the nation’s electricity portfolio, enhances grid reliability, and reduces the impact of a failure of the U.S. centralized electricity infrastructure.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Akeena Solar "Rocks" Concrete Recycling Plant

LOS GATOS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Akeena Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKNS), a leading designer and installer of solar power systems, today announced the Star Quality Concrete project. This installation will be the largest commercial solar power system in San Jose.

The 410 KW Akeena Solar power system will house 1,890 Akeena solar panels on the roof of Star Quality Concrete in downtown San Jose.

“At Akeena Solar, we are excited about the opportunity to help existing manufacturing businesses operate in a renewable and lower cost way,” said Jim Curran, Akeena Solar COO. “At the same time that we assist companies make the transition, we’re also proud to move San Jose closer to achieving Mayor Reed’s vision for a greener San Jose.”

Star Quality Concrete, a family-owned, independent concrete mixing plant has received global recognition for its innovative technology and its recent foray into sustainability. The company’s newest technology manufactures sand and rock for concrete aggregate by crushing demolition concrete.

“The desire to use clean power to support a facility like ours first drove us to look at installing a solar system,” said Jerry Blatt, owner of Star Quality Concrete. “Recycling old concrete relied heavily on fossil fuels, which also significantly drove up operating costs. Akeena Solar is building a renewable power system that will help us lower our operating costs and improve our efficiency in a way that is both economically and environmentally beneficial.”

“I am delighted that one of our long-time San Jose companies, Star Quality Concrete, is going green by installing the city's largest commercial solar system,” said Mayor Chuck Reed. “From residents to businesses, San Joseans are working hard to increase our use of clean energy and decrease our reliance on foreign fossil fuels.”

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

FedEx Completes Solar Installation

MEMPHIS, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) today announced that its operating company FedEx Freight has completed the installation of a solar-electric system in Whittier, Calif., and is nearing completion on a similar solar-powered facility in Fontana, Calif. Both systems will provide a substantial portion of the facilities’ peak energy needs.

The 282 kilowatt (kW) solar power system in Whittier has the capacity to produce over 414,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity each year, providing almost 40 percent of the facility’s annual energy needs and significantly reducing the service center’s dependence on the electric grid. The Whittier terminal employs about 500 workers and serves the East Los Angeles area.

In 2005, FedEx Express activated a 904 kW system at its Oakland, Calif., hub facility that meets up to 80 percent of that facility’s peak energy demand and produces power equivalent to that used by more than 900 homes during the daytime. At the time, the Oakland project was California’s largest corporate solar-power roof-top installation.

“Employing technologies that reduce energy use and enhance efficiencies at our facilities underscores the value FedEx assigns to doing what’s right for the environment now and for the energy security of our company and our country,” said Douglas G. Duncan, president and CEO of FedEx Freight.

To complete the Whittier system, 1,445 solar panels were installed on 22,000 square feet of the facility’s roof space. BP Solar, part of the global energy major BP, manufactured the panels and served as the project developer.

Bob Malone, chairman and president of BP America said, "BP believes that solar power has an important role to play in expanding US energy supply in a clean, sustainable and carbon-free way. We're pleased to have helped FedEx meet a portion of its power needs in a clean and sustainable way."

FedEx and BP work together strategically to identify, develop and implement a range of solutions to increase FedEx’s security of energy supply while improving its environmental performance.

“Working closely with FedEx, we’ve shown that collaboration can deliver great performance,” said Richard Bartlett, BP vice president of strategic cooperation. “The FedEx Freight solar installations in California are a great example of where we are making sustained operational, financial and environmental progress together.”

FedEx Freight is also installing a similar solar-power generation system at its Fontana, Calif., service center. Set for completion later this spring, this 269 kW sun-powered system is expected to generate over 370,000 kWh a year, approximately 50 percent of the facility’s energy needs. The Fontana terminal employs more than 500 workers and serves the area between San Bernardino and Los Angeles.

To complement these solar energy projects, FedEx Freight has completed other energy-efficiency upgrades at both the Whittier and Fontana facilities as yet another way to demonstrate the FedEx commitment to innovative and environmentally responsible energy solutions.

“FedEx and its subsidiaries recognize that effective environmental management is one of its most important corporate priorities,” said Mitch Jackson, director of environmental affairs and sustainability for FedEx Corp. “As a global transportation industry leader, FedEx believes strongly in progressive environmental stewardship and resource sustainability. These power generation systems represent another step that FedEx companies are taking as we work collaboratively toward these objectives.”

Prosper Survey Shows 91% Lean Green

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Prosper, America’s largest people-to-people lending marketplace with over 650,000 members and $130 million in funded loans, recently conducted a survey of US consumers located in major metropolitan regions.1 According to the survey, consumers have a strong desire to implement energy-saving home improvements, but stated that they are deterred by the costly nature of these projects.

The vast majority of respondents (91%) care about conserving natural resources, but 75% indicated that they are deterred from implementing energy-saving home improvements, such as purchasing energy-efficient appliances, insulation or solar energy panels, due to high costs of implementation. A separate survey of Prosper’s lender community found that 93% of respondents would consider bidding on a borrower’s loan listing for the purpose of supporting a green project.2

“In an increasingly environmentally-conscious world, US consumers should be able to adopt an eco-friendly lifestyle in an affordable way,” said Chris Larsen, co-founder and CEO of Prosper. “With the largest online community of individual lenders and attractive credit quality borrowers, Prosper offers eco-conscious Americans an effective way to meet their like-minded peers and fund green projects.”

To access complete survey results, please visit http://blog.prosper.com/2008/04/22/it-aint-easy-going-green/

MIT To Launch "Solar Revolution"

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Promising to transform solar power from a “boutique” option to an affordable, dependable, mainstream energy solution, MIT and the Chesonis Family Foundation today launched a “solar revolution” with the ultimate aim of making solar energy America’s primary carbon-free fuel.

The Solar Revolution Project (SRP), funded by a $10 million gift from the Foundation, will explore new materials and systems that could dramatically accelerate the availability of solar energy. The SRP will complement and interact closely with other large solar projects at MIT, creating one of the largest solar energy clusters at any research university.

The Chesonis gift will allow MIT to explore bold approaches that are essential for transforming the solar industry. Specifically, it will focus on three elements—capture, conversion and storage—that will ultimately make solar power a viable, near-term energy source.

“Solar is thought of as an ultimate energy technology off in the distant future. The goal of SRP is to move this timeframe nearer to the present. The SRP will make solar a practical alternative, by committing a 10-year timeframe for establishing the new base of scientific knowledge it will take to draw a market-competitive energy supply from the sun,” said Daniel Nocera, the Henry Dreyfus Professor of Energy and Professor of Chemistry at MIT, who will direct the SRP. “With SRP, think ‘solar’ and think ‘now.’ This is the revolution that is implied in the project name.”

Professor Ernest Moniz, director of the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI), said, “Climate change makes the search for more environmentally benign sources of energy urgent and hugely important. Many experts have concluded that solar energy is a key, if not the key answer to our global energy challenges in the long term.

“The Chesonis investment—large, flexible, empowering of highly creative MIT faculty and students—embodies this conclusion,” Moniz continued. “We applaud the vision, generosity and confidence in MIT that this extraordinary gift demonstrates.”

Most solar research focuses on known materials and systems, but, thus far, these approaches cannot be implemented on a large scale. The SRP will allow researchers to explore entirely new materials and systems that could transform solar power into a viable energy resource over the near-term.

A unique feature of the SRP is its flexibility: The gift’s unrestricted funding is aimed at creating a “no holds barred” research environment that will inspire innovations in the field.

The SRP will initially support 30 energy fellowships for students on a range of solar-related studies, from the development of novel materials for energy conversion and storage to using solar energy to produce hydrogen fuel from water.

Each fellowship will span five years, which allows for significant continuity and greater impact. The gift from the Foundation will also help support an integrated study on the future of solar energy, building on the success of two earlier MIT interdisciplinary reports on the future of coal and of nuclear energy in a carbon-constrained world.

“We are at a breakpoint, both in energy supply and environmental consequences. Solar energy has enormous promise as the ultimate answer to our energy problems,” said Arunas Chesonis, benefactor of the Foundation. “Solar energy is widely distributed and the fuel cost for solar power is zero. It is our hope that by investing in the people at MIT and giving them the freedom to take risks in the lab, we will enable them to be true game-changers—advancing the state of the art to a point where solar power is cheaper and more reliable than electricity from coal.”

The Foundation will also contribute to the MITEI Energy Seed Fund Program (ESFP), which solicits and funds innovative energy proposals from across the MIT campus. The first round of solicitations for the ESFP (and the related Ignition Grant program for junior faculty) provided close to $2 million to fund 20 outstanding proposals. The Chesonis gift will provide an additional $500,000 to supplement funds from MITEI industry partners.

SolarCity Offers Zero Down Financing For Solar Power Systems

FOSTER CITY, Calif., April 22 /PRNewswire/ -- SolarCity, California's leading provider of solar power systems, on Earth Day announced a new solar power option that can make clean, renewable energy less expensive for homeowners than electricity from their utility company. The company is extending its unprecedented $0-down solar financing option to the majority
of its California service area beginning today and extending until July 31, 2008. Closely following SolarCity's April 2, 2008 debut of SolarLease, the first- ever, installer-led residential solar leasing option, the $0-down financing opportunity marks a major step forward in the effort to make solar more affordable and spur greater solar adoption in the state. As part of the program, SolarCity will recommend the appropriate solar system based on a resident's electricity needs. As an example, a homeowner with a $150 electricity bill can switch to a 3.2 kilowatt solar system for $0 down, an initial monthly lease payment of $90 per month, and a greater than $100 monthly reduction in utility bill. Thus SolarLease customers can save money each month by going solar and generate an immediate return on their investment in cleaner, renewable power.

"For solar power to truly reach its potential for environmental benefit, it must become more affordable and accessible -- we're trying to make solar power financially viable for more Californians," said SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive. "This first-of-its-kind, $0-down financing option is designed to allow families to start generating a positive return on their solar investment from day one, so they don't have to choose between helping the environment and saving money."

SolarCity's promotional program debuted in San Jose last week, as a response to Mayor Chuck Reed's challenge for a solar installer to offer a no- money-down leasing option. SolarCity was first to respond to that challenge and has decided to now extend the promotional offer to customers
in most of its service areas in California. California residents interested in learning more about SolarLease should call 1(888)SOL-CITY or 1(888)765-2489 for additional information, or to arrange a free solar consultation. As this is a limited-time offer, interested homeowners are
encouraged to act within the next 100 days -- through July 31st, 2008 -- to take advantage of the financial benefit of SolarLease.

Suntech Power Opens Office Down Under

SAN FRANCISCO and SYDNEY, April 22 /Xinhua-PRNewswire/ -- Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP), one of the world's leading manufacturers of photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules, today announced the opening of Suntech Australia that will be focused on sales and business development in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.

''With abundant sunlight and low population density, Australia is ideally suited to distributed solar energy generation, and well-placed to take a leading role in the development and utilization of this clean and sustainable energy solution,'' said Dr. Zhengrong Shi, Suntech's Chairman
and Chief Executive Officer. ''Australia's ratification of the Kyoto protocol and increasing State support for solar projects reflects the broader community's growing interest in renewable energy and environmental sustainability. Suntech is committed to supporting this trend through
investment in Australia's solar industry, and the provision of premium quality solar products.''

Dr. Shi added, ''With our new base in Sydney and continued collaborative efforts with local and regional partners, we will strive to promote the long-term development of the solar industry in Australia, New Zealand and neighbouring Pacific Islands.''

Dr. Zhengrong Shi, an alumnus of the University of NSW, and Suntech have maintained strong connections with the Australian solar industry. Suntech and the Centre of Excellence in Advanced Silicon Photovoltaics and
Photonics of the University of New South Wales Australia have enjoyed long term collaboration on the research and development of cutting-edge solar technologies that target to increase PV cell conversion efficiency and decrease solar energy cost per watt. As part of the collaboration, Suntech has provided funding for solar research projects and the two organizations have mutually shared benefits produced from such efforts. In addition, Suntech also provides funding for a number of UNSW undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships for training in the area of photovoltaic engineering.

''Coming from a scientific research background, I take great pleasure in providing opportunities for up and coming scientists in this dynamic industry,'' commented Dr. Shi. ''Suntech's relationship with the University of NSW brings a commercial focus to research projects and supports the education and development of some of the world's best talent in solar R&D. At the same time, many of the technologies developed through the collaboration can be applied in mass production and facilitate lower cost per watt production of solar energy.''

One technology coming from the research collaboration, named the Pluto technology, is already achieving 18% to 19% conversion efficiency on mono-crystalline PV cells in pilot production - well above the industry average of 16%. Suntech plans to transfer Pluto technology to commercial production in 2008.

Monday, April 21, 2008

eSolar Annouces Pre-Fab Solar Thermal Power Plants

PASADENA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, eSolar™, a producer of scalable solar thermal power plants, announced that it has closed $130 million in funding from Idealab, Google.org, Oak Investment Partners, and other investors for the construction and deployment of pre-fabricated power plants. Designed to address the complex issues surrounding large or utility-scale power projects, eSolar’s distributed solar thermal plants achieve economies of scale at 33 MW, and are modularly scaled to fit the needs of large and small utilities.

“The eSolar™ power plant is based on mass manufactured components, and designed for rapid construction, uniform modularity, and unlimited scalability,” said Asif Ansari, CEO of eSolar. “Rather than over-engineering the solution, eSolar’s smart scalable solar architecture targets what we see as the four key business obstacles facing the sector: price, scalability, rapid deployment, and grid impact.”

In order to deliver on the promise of Big Solar, the typical utility-scale installation faces huge construction costs and requires large tracts of real estate, combined with expensive transmission line improvements to bring the power out of the deserts and into the cities. eSolar’s modular approach stands in direct contrast to this ‘bigger is better’ strategy. eSolar has replaced expensive steel, concrete, and brute force with inexpensive computing power and elegant algorithms. This new method of installing a solar power plant minimizes costly civil construction and the use of heavy equipment, dramatically reducing project cost and deployment time.

Centering on eSolar’s 33 MW pre-fab form-factor, the company’s modular design translates to minimal land requirements. The company’s solar power plant solutions are tailored to fit local resources and produce a low environmental footprint, favoring a straightforward siting and permitting process. Myriad locations combined with a multitude of interconnection options mean that eSolar can deliver more clean, carbon free power where it is needed: near the cities and towns where it is consumed.

“eSolar’s primary business goal is nothing short of making solar electricity for less than the price of coal, without subsidies,” said Bill Gross, eSolar Chairman and Founder of Idealab. “This is not only attainable, but will truly change the world.”

Bandel Carano, Managing Partner of Oak Investment Partners, added, “eSolar is the only cost effective solution that can deliver gigawatts of solar energy generation at market prices today, because they have developed a truly disruptive scalable solution that can be deployed rapidly.”

eSolar has secured land rights in the southwest United States to support the production and transmission of over 1 GW of power. eSolar will have a fully operational power plant later this year in southern California.

Sungevity Lauches "Sunshine Online"

BERKELEY, Calif., April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Every roof matters to Bay Area-based Sungevity Inc. -- which launches today and uses satellite imagery and other technologies to cut the cost, simplify the process and make it easier than ever for homeowners to add solar and experience a
lifetime of benefits. Sungevity aims to make solar energy available to every homeowner that wants to make a wise investment and have a positive environmental impact.

Sungevity has created a new approach to buying a residential solar system. Rather than starting with an expensive, manual process of measuring and calculating a solar system for a home, Sungevity uses satellite images and proprietary software to remotely engineer solar electric systems for customers and send quotes online.

To get started, a homeowner can go to http://www.sungevity.com, enter their address and their utility usage (if available). Within hours, Sungevity will reply with a detailed quote that provides information about a customer's potential return on investment and the environmental benefits of going solar. This process usually results in multiple solar system design options for a roof, and allows customers to choose a solar system based not only on cost, but also on financial returns and environmental offsets.

Traditionally, solar companies send out crews multiple times to scale a prospective customer's roof to make estimates and measurements, adding time and costing extra money. By automating the initial quote online, Sungevity cuts the cost for homeowners and speeds the process.

"We believe solar power should be affordable and easy to access for all homeowners," said Danny Kennedy, Sungevity President and CXO. "Much like Dell Computer revolutionized the PC industry and Netflix movie rentals, our goal is to jump start the residential solar industry by making it simple and efficient for everyone with a view of the sun to go solar."

Sungevity offers five solar system options that range in cost from as little as $7,500 to about $38,500 (including installation). It already has several solar customers in the San Francisco Bay Area and in coming months will be helping more Northern California homes go solar. Sungevity aims to expand throughout California by the end of 2008.

"We are working to protect homeowners across California from rising electricity bills by making solar accessible," continued Kennedy. "Our site is designed to spread sunshine online -- customers point and click -- we do the rest!"

How it works

Starting today, homeowners can visit http://www.sungevity.com, and follow simple steps to going solar:

1. Enter Address. Learn about solar at http://www.Sungevity.com, and when
you're ready, enter your address. Sungevity will design system options
to suit your roof and email you back your iQuote, including what your
home looks like with solar, as well as the financial and environmental
2. Select System. Chose the system size that best suits you and decide if
you'd like to invest up front, or pay as you go (if you need
assistance with financing your system purchase, Sungevity will
facilitate that, too).
3. Order System. You're on your way! You sign your contract and select a
preferred home visit date and installation date. At the home visit,
Sungevity will check out your circuit board and plan the installation.
Sungevity will send you a packet of simple forms to sign and return
(utility, building permit, & rebate application) along with an online
energy audit to complete.
4. System Delivered. UPS will deliver your solar panels directly to your
door so you can track their progress online.
5. System Installed. On the date of your choice, Sungevity will arrange
for your solar system to be installed by a qualified electrical
professional. This will take 2-4 days depending on the system size,
and you need to be there for only a few hours. Your local utility then
inspects the installation and turns your solar system on.
6. System Live! You're up and running, saving money and the environment!

Macy's Dedicates 307 Kw Solar Power System

SAN JOSE, Calif., April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- In anticipation of tomorrow's worldwide celebration of Earth Day, Macy's and SunPower Corporation (Nasdaq: SPWR), the San Jose-based manufacturer of high-efficiency solar cells, solar panels and solar systems, are dedicating
a 307-kilowatt solar power system at the Macy's store at Oakridge Mall in San Jose. SunPower has partnered with Macy's to design and install solar power systems on 28 stores across California, including 12 in Northern California, and also assisted the retailer in improving the energy efficiency at the stores.

The solar dedication is part of Macy's Turn Over A New Leaf campaign that kicked off yesterday. The awareness campaign is designed to support, educate and inspire sustainability and eco-friendly practices in everyday life. In addition to special promotions, merchandise and in-store events, Macy's will donate all of the proceeds from ticket sales for its national charity days -- One Good Turn -- on April 26th and 27th to the National Park Foundation.

The solar power system on Macy's San Jose store is expected to generate 404,000 kilowatt hours per year. It will reduce annual carbon dioxide emissions by 514,000 pounds, which is the equivalent to planting 1590 acres of trees over the 30-year lifetime of the system.

"Through commitment and innovation, I believe that we will lead the way to solving the world's environmental challenges," said San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed. "The partnership between Macy's and SunPower is a great example. Together, the two companies are demonstrating how deploying clean renewable technology is fiscally and environmentally responsible. San Jose stands to benefit from their leadership and vision."

Macy's has committed to installing over 8 megawatts of solar power systems on its California stores. At most of the stores, including the San Jose location, Macy's will purchase the generated electricity from a third-party financier under the SunPower Access(TM) power purchase
agreement (PPA) program. MMA Renewable Ventures, LLC, will finance, own and operate solar power systems at all stores for which PPA arrangements have been finalized. Delivering predictably priced electricity with no upfront system cost, MMA Renewable Ventures' PPA services provide Macy's with immediate savings and a long-term hedge against rising peak power prices.

Combining solar power with energy efficiency upgrades such as high-efficiency lighting and HVAC systems and energy management systems is expected to reduce energy consumption by more than 24 million kilowatt hours annually, achieving an estimated 40 percent reduction in Macy's demand for utility-provided energy in those stores. Carbon dioxide emissions are estimated to be reduced by more than 195 million pounds over the lifetime of the systems, which is the equivalent of removing 1,144 cars from California's highways each year.

"Macy's is committed to supporting the development of clean technologies, and reducing our energy consumption," says Macy's, Inc. Vice Chair Tom Cole. "We are proud to join the fight against greenhouse gas emissions in California because we believe a successful business is
dependent on a healthy environment."

"SunPower is proud to partner with Macy's to deliver innovative solar technology, efficiency upgrades and affordable financing solutions to support this unprecedented 28-store commitment," said SunPower Chief Executive Officer Tom Werner. "We applaud Macy's for their forward-thinking approach to environmental sustainability and corporate responsibility."

In addition to San Jose, other Northern California locations scheduled to receive SunPower solar power systems include Concord, Cupertino, Daly City, Fresno, Newark, Richmond, San Rafael, Santa Clara, Stockton and Sunnyvale. Completion of all the solar power installations is expected by the end of this year.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Day4 Energy Rated Top Solar Panel

BURNABY, British Columbia, April 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Day4 Energy Inc. (TSX: DFE), a leading manufacturer of high performance, cost-effective solar electric modules, today announced that international third party testing has confirmed Day4 Energy's 48MC solar panels
consistently offer industry-leading efficiency and field performance under a variety weather conditions.

Monitoring at Germany's Albstadt-Sigmaringen University occurs in real-time and tracks power output, density, and module efficiency throughout the course of the day for monocrystalline, multicrystalline, and thin film solar panels. Repeated measurements among 12 test sites have demonstrated that, across different levels of irradiance and temperature,
Day4 Energy's modules regularly produce the most power per given area.

"It is truly invaluable to see such robust results coming from Prof. Franz Josef Kuhn and his team, for they are veritable connoisseurs of the solar industry," said Jake Brown, vice president of marketing and business development of Day4 Energy. "As our customers across Europe and North America have found, and the Albstadt-Sigmaringen University has confirmed, our proprietary innovation, the Day4 Electrode, creates a superior product that in diverse environments, seasons and daylight provides significant return on investment as reliable clean electricity for decades to come."

"Solar energy represents an immense opportunity for our society and economy, so it is with great enthusiasm that we test, analyze and observe such a wide variety of PV products," said Professor Franz Josef Kuhn, project lead at Germany's Albstadt-Sigmaringen University. "The results for Day4 Energy are enviable -- quite frankly we have been impressed by the Day4 48MC panel's system performance and proven long-term reliability. Our testing has confirmed that the Day4 Electrode produces one of the best modules we have observed, offering high quality and precise manufacturing. What is truly important though is this product's field performance, demonstrating some of the strongest results among a great variety of products that we have tested."

The Day4 48 MC solar module is based on the company's proprietary Day4 Electrode technology, an innovative approach to module construction that directly replaces decades-old soldering methods. The result is a high-quality Day4 solar electric product with higher performance, improved aesthetics and lower cost.

The Albstadt-Sigmaringen University's Department of Industrial Engineering has monitored more than 400 photovoltaic (PV) installations since 1996 both independently and in conjunction with leading municipal utilities, and began collecting data on Day4 Energy's advanced solar modules in July of 2007. The results are available online at http://www.hs-albsig.de/solar.

Trina Solar Cancels Billion Dollar Production Facility Plan

CHANGZHOU, China, April 14 /Xinhua-PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Trina Solar Limited (NYSE: TSL) ("Trina Solar" or the "Company"), a leading integrated manufacturer of solar photovoltaic products from the production of ingots, wafers and cells to the assembly of PV modules, founded in 1997, today announced its decision to discontinue the development of its previously announced 10,000MT polysilicon production facility having a total estimated cost of $1 billion. The Company also announced that its related equipment supply contract with GT Solar Incorporated ("GT Solar"), which was subject to final approval by the Boards of both companies, will lapse as a result, with the concurrence of both parties.

"We have made this strategic decision after careful assessment of our raw material requirements, in conjunction with recent and favorable long term polysilicon market and supply condition developments." said Jifan Gao, Trina Solar's Chairman and CEO. "Furthermore, we wish to reaffirm our strong working relationship with our partner GT Solar, which continues to
provide us with advanced multicrystalline technology platforms to support our target of 350MW of annualized module capacity by the end of 2008."

Tom Zarrella, GT Solar's CEO, stated, "Trina Solar is a long-term and valued customer, and we look forward to supplying them with our advanced DSS casting platforms and other products and services, as they continue to grow their business aggressively."

As a result of recent favorable changes in the polysilicon supply environment, Trina Solar now believes it has greater access to polysilicon feedstock to support its growth objectives. To address its forward polysilicon requirements, the Company will continue to sign long term
contracts as a means to meet its strategic supply needs. Additionally, Trina Solar will consider strategic investment options in future polysilicon projects which offer attractive economics and involve smaller investment requirements, although no projects are currently under consideration.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Dow Chemical KeyTo Spanish Solar Projects

The Dow Chemical Company Performance Fluids business is enabling three large solar power plants in Spain to collect heat and convert it to electrical energy. Taking advantage of the sunny climate, and favorable tax incentives, Spain is pioneering large, commercially viable solar power plants.

Starting later this year, Dow will deliver over 2,000 metric tons of DOWTHERM™ A – a well known, specialized heat transfer fluid – to the Andasol I Solar Energy plant in Guadix, located in southern Spain, near Granada. A few months later, Dow will fill the Iberdrola Renovables plant located in Ciudad Real with nearly 1,000 metric tons of DOWTHERM™ A. Later still, another 2,000 metric tons of the same heat transfer fluid will be delivered to Andasol II, also located near Guadix.

Each plant will supply 50 megawatts of electrical power for a total of 150 megawatts. This is enough electricity for about 90,000 homes. Both of the Andasol plants will save approximately 450,000 tons of carbon dioxide that would have been released to the atmosphere had traditional fuels been burned.

Heat Transfer Fluid From Dow

The role of DOWTHERM™ A is to collect heat energy and transport it to a power generating station. The transported heat converts water to steam which in turn drives turbines to make electricity. DOWTHERM™ A is a mixture of special fluids that have the high temperature stability needed to collect, transport, and store heat.

DOWTHERM™ A is ideal for systems that use liquid or vapor phase heating. Not only does Dow have the right chemistry for the application, but it also has the manufacturing and logistical capabilities few others have, that are needed for projects of this size.

Production and Delivery Challenges

Dow spent a great deal of time designing an effective manufacturing and supply chain capability to deliver the incredibly large amounts of heat transfer fluid needed for these solar plants. “Each order is massive in its own right,” said Steven Stanley, Ph.D., global business director for Dow Performance Fluids. “We have large manufacturing resources, logistical expertise and the transportation capabilities here at Dow. There are few companies globally that have the capability to do a specialized job of this size.”

Manufacturing Challenges

The manufacturing challenges for Dow to fulfill this order centered on creating a supply design to enable the production of large batches of DOWTHERM™ A. To further complicate the process, huge amounts of raw materials are needed to enable manufacture. Dow decided to use local suppliers of raw materials to shorten the manufacturing process. Use of local supply had never been done before.

Delivery Challenges

All these tons of DOWTHERM™ A need to be delivered over the road in a short, two to four week period. This is a challenge given how much fluid is needed. In addition, the DOWTHERM™ A is heated and delivered at about 40 degrees C. To achieve these results, Dow invented a completely new supply chain procedure.

To do this, Dow:

* Established supply capability in Spain for finished fluids.
* Optimized fluid heating within the supply chain to meet customer delivery requirements.
* Developed the capability to deliver heated DOWTHERM™ A on a continuous basis during the delivery period.

“This system of supply, manufacture, and delivery will enable us to continue to replicate these same results for years to come,” Stanley concluded. “We can provide superior chemistry with great service at the lowest possible cost for our customers.”

China Solar & Clean Energy Solutions, Inc. Announces Record Fourth Quarter

NEW YORK and BEIJING, April 11 /Xinhua-PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- China Solar & Clean Energy Solutions, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CSOL), a premier seller and distributor of solar water heaters, renewable energy solutions, and space heating devices in the People's Republic of China (the "PRC"), today announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal
year ended December 31, 2007 (''FY07'').

Revenues for fourth quarter 2007 increased approximately 119% to approximately $12 million, from $5.5 million in the prior year's quarter. The increase was driven primarily by its recent acquisition of Tianjin Huaneng Group Energy Equipment Co., Ltd. (Tianjin), which contributed $5.8 million in revenue for the fourth quarter of 2007 compared to none for the
same period in 2006 and $3.8 million for the third quarter in 2007. Revenues of the Company's core business generated from its Bazhou facility in the quarter totaled approximately $6.2 million, a slight increase over the prior year's fourth quarter.

The Company's gross profit in the fourth quarter of 2007 increased by 158% to approximately $3.1 million compared to the year ago period. Of the $3.1 million, $1.2 million was contributed by the Bazhou facility, representing 22% organic growth. Tianjin Huaneng contributed $1.9 million
in the fourth quarter and was not a component of the Company in the fourth quarter 2006. Revenues emanating from our Bazhou facility had gross margins of 21%, while Tianjin had 28%, and overall gross margins were 22.39%, an increase from 21.7% reported in 2006 which benefited from integration of Tianjin and the operational advantages it brought to Bazhou.

Operating expenses in the fourth quarter increased 66% to $1.7 million as compared to $1.0 million in the prior year period, representing operating margins of 14.4% and 18.9% respectively. This increase in expenses was primarily a result of higher general and administrative expenses associated with the integration of the Tianjing Huaneng acquisition. As a percentage of sales, operating expenses decreased to 4.7% from 4.9%.

Net income in the fourth quarter increased 479% to $1.1 million, or 9% of revenue, up from $0.2 million, or 3.5% of revenue last year. Excluding the Tianjing Huaneng facility, net income and net margins were $1.02 million and 16% respectively. The higher net income was due primarily to substantially higher revenues. Diluted earnings per share (EPS) in the fourth quarter of 2007 were $0.11 based on 9.9 million fully diluted shares, versus $0.03 on 6.96 million fully diluted shares in the prior year period.

Mr. Deli Du, President and Chief Executive Officer of China Solar commented, "We are encouraged by the successful consolidation of Tianjin Huaneng with our Bazhou facility which will enable us to become one of the leading integrated solution providers of clean and renewable energy to industrial and residential customers in China. During the fourth quarter, we complemented our core solar water heater business with strong growth from Tianjin Huaneng, which enabled us to achieve 72.1% revenue growth. As anticipated, we experienced margin pressure in our core solar water heater products which was offset by higher margins through Tianjin Huaneng's proprietary energy saving boilers and environmental protection equipment
which helped to improve our overall profitability in 2007. Tianjin also integrated our solar water heaters into its heat recovery projects to further increase waste heat recovery while we began to incorporate Tianjin's technology into our product portfolio. We believe we are well positioned as a leading player in the clean energy industry in China and will grow the business both organically and through complementary acquisitions, which collectively will enable us to capitalize on our
technology and engineering expertise, marketing and branding strength, to deliver a truly integrated clean energy solutions company.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Ascent Solar To Partner With Giscosa For Building Integrated Photovoltaic Products

LITTLETON, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Ascent Solar Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:ASTI), a developer of thin-film photovoltaic modules, announced today the entering into of a definitive cooperation agreement with Giscosa Sociedad Limitada of Spain (Giscosa), a distributor and manufacturer of rubber membranes for roofing, reservoirs, and canals. The agreement focuses on the development of building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) roofing products intended to be distributed by Giscosa into the European marketplace.

The parties have agreed to collaborate in the development of BIPV roofing materials based on Giscosa’s existing RubberSun roofing products. Ascent Solar intends to supply Giscosa with product from its existing 1.5 MW production line for the development, testing and certification of the BIPV products. The parties also envision subsequent demonstration scale projects to validate performance and develop market demand for the BIPV roofing products.

Joseph McCabe, Ascent Solar’s Vice President of Business Development stated, “Ascent Solar is pleased to be working with BIPV innovators like Giscosa, particularly in European markets such as Spain, which we believe currently offer attractive incentives for PV solutions.”

EMCORE To Supply Concentrated Photovoltaic Systems to XinAo Group

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., April 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- EMCORE Corporation (Nasdaq: EMKR) a leading provider of semiconductor-based components and subsystems for the broadband, fiber-optic, satellite and terrestrial solar power markets, announced today that it has agreed to supply CPV systems to XinAo Group in China. XinAo Group is one of China's largest energy companies and is well known for its clean-energy technologies. The program will start with the delivery of a 50 kilowatt (kW) concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) system to be installed in Langfang, China. This system will be used for test and evaluation purposes. Once the expected reliability and performance metrics have been demonstrated, XinAo plans to install CPV systems to provide electric power for its innovative coal gasification project, which is estimated to have a requirement of 60 megawatts (MW) of power. XinAo believes that EMCORE's CPV technology will provide a cost-effective solution for its energy needs.

In addition, XinAo intends to build a manufacturing plant in China, jointly owned by EMCORE, to manufacture CPV systems designed and certified by EMCORE for the Chinese market.

Earl Fuller, Vice President and General Manager of EMCORE's Solar Power Division stated, "We are pleased to be recognized as a leading supplier of CPV systems for cost-effective electric power generation for XinAo's innovative energy synthesis applications for zero carbon emission. This kind of distributed energy application is a strategic focus for EMCORE. Through our wholly-owned subsidiary, EMCORE China, located in the same city as XinAo, we will be able to form an efficient and cost-effective manufacturing capability to serve XinAo and other demands in the Chinese market."

EMCORE's CPV systems are powered by our industry leading high-efficiency compound semiconductor-based multi-junction solar cells that operate with 500x concentration to provide a lower cost-per-watt than competing technologies. CPV improves the performance of compound
semiconductor-based solar cells, avoids the supply constraint that currently exists with silicon-based solar modules, and provides a lower cost-per-watt. EMCORE's continued investment in high-efficiency CPV systems for utility-scale photovoltaic power systems will enable the development of a new alternative energy resource worldwide.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Credo Mobile Offers Solar Accessories

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CREDO Mobile, the greenest mobile company in the U.S., today unveiled the availability of two new eco-friendly mobile accessories, making it even easier for socially conscious consumers to make a difference simply by using the products. The only wireless service to offer the products, the company’s new Iqua Solar Bluetooth headset and the Tread phone case allow consumers to have the latest technology while driving social change with every call they make.

“People should expect more from their phone company,” said Laura Scher, CEO of CREDO, a division of Working Assets. “At CREDO we’re about making sure everyday tasks like talking on your cellphone yield big impact. We understand that our members want to effect change in the world but may not feel they have the tools to do so. By continuing to deliver new, easy-to-use products, we unify everyday necessities with positive social change.”

In addition to the environmental benefits of the mobile accessory line, CREDO Mobile takes its commitment one step further as the only mobile phone company to donate one percent of revenue—including mobile accessories, phones and calling plans—to progressive groups such as Greenpeace, Rainforest Action Network and Endangered Species Coalition. CREDO members can expect this “money-forward” guarantee with every call they make or product they purchase through CREDO. To date, members of CREDO Mobile and its parent company, Working Assets, have donated $60 million to these and other progressive organizations.

CREDO Mobile’s eco-friendly product line includes:

* CREDO Iqua Solar Bluetooth headset: the first solar-powered Bluetooth headset that draws its energy from the sun. It features 200 hours standby time and up to twelve hours of talk time and is compatible with most phones, smart phones, and any other Bluetooth enabled devices.

* CREDO Tread handset case: a fully functional handset case made with recycled tires that otherwise would typically be burned or added to landfills. Recycling the small amount of rubber needed to make one Tread case eliminates the emissions of 200 trillion molecules of benzo(a)pyrene, a hazardous gas that leads to cancer.

* The CREDO Solio Charger: a solar powered charger that charges cell phones, iPods, digital cameras and other devices using the sun’s energy. According to the Fraunhofer Institute, in just one year, one hundred thousand users charging their cell phones creates 172 lbs of CO2 – the equivalent of six million basketballs. By using the CREDO Solio Charger, consumers are reducing their carbon footprint without compromising functionality and performance.

In addition to the mobile accessory line, CREDO Mobile offers a wide variety of phones for its members including the Sanyo S1 and Katana II, and Motorola MOTO Q.

Pricing and Availability:

* The CREDO Iqua Bluetooth Headset retails at $99.99.
* The CREDO Tread Handset Case retails at $24.95.
* The CREDO Solio Charger retails at $99.95.
* Products are available at www.credomobile.com.

Globaly Green Energy Consortium Launches Greening & Cleaning America Campaign

SINGER ISLAND, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Globally Green Energy Consortium (GGEC), the leading green energy and sustainability non-profit organization has launched a major green neighborhood initiative called Greening & Cleaning AmericaSM. The goal of this initiative is to provide funding for green and sustainability programs to communities, schools, colleges, towns and cities throughout the U.S. that are otherwise unable to fund projects due to limited resources or budget constraints.

“GGEC will dedicate 100% of its annual surplus for the next ten years to help the nation’s communities become green and sustainable,” states Zacharie Mondel, GGEC Chief Executive Officer.

The Greening and Cleaning program is open to communities of any size, school boards, colleges, healthcare facilities, government subsidized housing facilities, community centers, public libraries, and assisted living facilities. Included in the program offering are:

* Energy Efficient Lighting and Heat/AC Systems
* Automated Energy Management Systems
* Conversion of Transportation Vehicles to Bio-Fuel and Bio-Gas
* Solar Solutions
* Co–Generation Systems
* Water Conservation Solutions
* Energy Efficient Waste Management
* Clean Air Quality Technologies
* Geo-Thermal Heating Systems
* Environmentally Friendly Cleaning Solutions
* Solid Waste Reduction Programs
* Environmental Management Education and Programs

“A goal of Greening and Cleaning America, is to show what Americans can accomplish when they unite for the common good of the environment and are committed to reducing greenhouse gases,” states Ambassador Siddique, Vice Chairman of the GGEC Board of Directors.

”We are counting on corporate America and all Americans to contribute to the success of this program,” said Mr. Mondel. “GGEC will match donations to this program dollar for dollar.”

To apply or participate in this program please email info@ggec.org or call 888-613-5554. The organization’s website can be found at http://www.ggec.org.

Clear Skies Solar Lands $20 Million Deal In India

NEW YORK & INDIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Clear Skies Solar, Inc. (OTCBB:CSKH) today announced a $20 million agreement, subject to financing, with Power Cube, a company located in Utter Pradesh, India to develop and construct the first of several solar energy projects in India.

In this project, which is Clear Skies Solar’s first step into the international arena, the company will design and construct a multi-megawatt solar power system that will supply power to a steel mill and support the community’s energy grid system, providing much-needed energy on this particular line.

“We recognize that the continued use of fossil fuels negatively impacts both the economy and the environment,” said Power Cube Chairman Mohan Kejriwal. “As such, Power Cube is determined to meet a portion of India’s energy requirements by developing several large solar photovoltaic projects (PV Projects) which will generate electricity from sunlight.”

“India represents the first of many untapped markets that Clear Skies Solar plans to enter in 2008 and 2009,” said Ezra Green, Chairman and CEO of Clear Skies Solar. “Recognizing the role that solar power will play in the global search for cleaner and more abundant energy sources, Clear Skies Solar has built the infrastructure necessary to support this type of international expansion and to develop large-scale projects at an accelerated pace in order to support global power needs.”

“While international projects pose special challenges for solar energy providers, such as identifying proper high voltage lines and the ownership of the property for the system to be installed,” added Green. “Our unique ability to overcome such challenges makes Clear Skies Solar the natural choice for clients with challenging power needs.”

“Clear Skies Solar has shown that it has the ability and innovative construction techniques to execute this contract, and we look forward to this project beginning in October of 2008,” added Kejriwal. “It is the goal of both parties to complete the construction of the five megawatt PV Project and for it to be operational before March of 2009.”

Clear Skies Solar will provide the technology, engineering and construction services needed to create the PV Project and will also be prepared to provide the operation and maintenance services needed.

Solar AC Showcased At Green California Summit

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA--(Marketwire - April 7, 2008) - AquaCell Technologies, Inc., doing business as GreenCore Technology (PINKSHEETS: AQUA), announced today that it is exhibiting its GreenCore 10200 solar powered air conditioner at the Green California Summit and Exposition, being held at the Sacramento Convention Center in Sacramento, CA April 7-9, 2008.

GreenCore's solar powered air conditioner is the ideal fit for the summit's theme: "Green solutions for tight economic times." By capturing energy from the sun, the GreenCore 10200 can provide off the grid or hybrid climate control, saving both energy and money.

The Summit, designed to forward state and local programs to build clean and sustainable communities, is attended by decision makers from state and local government, as well as commercial sector building owners, architects, engineers and facility managers.

About AquaCell Technologies / GreenCore Technology

AquaCell Technologies, Inc. (www.aquacell.com), doing business as GreenCore Technology, Inc., is based in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. GreenCore develops, manufactures and markets "green" technology products. GreenCore is dedicated to helping conserve energy and natural resources while reducing pollutants and unwanted biological agents.

GreenCore is the world's only producer of a patented air conditioner powered by solar energy. The Company also manufactures earth-friendly water coolers designed to eliminate the energy required to produce and deliver traditional bottled water, as well as the waste generated in landfills.

Thule Installs Rooftop Solar At Connecticut Headquarters

SEYMOUR, Conn., April 8, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Thule, Inc., the world leader in the manufacturing of transportation accessories including vehicle roof rack systems, innovative RV solutions and truck racks and boxes for professional contractors, today announced that a 318-kilowatt (kW) DC solar photovoltaic (PV) system will be installed by North Chelmsford,
Massachusetts-based American Capital Energy on the roof of Thule's Seymour, Connecticut US headquarters.

"We are experts in maximizing a vehicle's roof space and we are pleased to be able to use our building's roof space to reduce and stabilize our energy cost," said Fred Clark, President of Thule, Inc. "This installation represents yet another step Thule is taking to minimize our energy
footprint. We have made substantial improvements in lighting, maintenance and operations over the past few years to achieve significant energy savings. We encourage our employees to ride bikes to work and provide facilities for those who do so -- leading to Thule being recognized as an
industry leader in going green by Bicycle Retailer and Industry News. In deciding to move forward with going solar at our facility we chose American Capital Energy as our integrator because of their extensive and proven experience in large commercial solar projects," concluded Mr. Clark.

The Thule solar PV system will consist of two separate arrays with a total of 1,876 solar panels. The PV system will supply an estimated 324,800 kWh annually, or about 26% of the facility's total electrical needs. Thule will be hosting the system under a power purchase agreement (PPA), where Nautilus Solar Energy, LLC, a developer of distributed generation and
utility scale solar power projects, will own the solar system and Thule will purchase energy produced at a fixed price below current utility rate. This allows Thule to stabilize its energy costs and Nautilus to receive federal tax incentives, rebates and renewable energy credits associated
with the project. The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund's (CCEF) On-site Renewable Distributed Energy (DG) Program is providing a $1.3 million grant to subsidize the system.

"Thule will enjoy two distinct advantages by using the power purchase agreement model to go solar -- controlled energy cost and minimal capital investment," stated Tom Hunton, President of American Capital Energy, the company designing and installing the Thule system. "We look forward to working with Thule, Nautilus Solar Energy and the CCEF to provide Thule with a system that will generate low cost electricity for a minimum of 25 years."

Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell commented, "Once the Thule solar PV system is installed, Connecticut as a whole will benefit from reduced demand on the grid and greenhouse gas reduction. I am delighted that many of our resident businesses have been eager to embrace clean, renewable forms of energy generation. They are to be congratulated for their environmental stewardship and resolve to make a difference."

James Rice, CEO of Nautilus Solar Energy, LLC, applauds both Thule and the CCEF for their commitment. "Nautilus Solar is very excited to provide renewable energy to Thule for many years to come. Their leadership will reduce dependence on fossil fuel, demand on the distribution system and greenhouse gas emissions."

Monday, April 07, 2008

Night Vision Tech Key To New Low-Cost Solar Cell

SARASOTA, Fla., April 7, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sunovia Energy Technologies, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: SUNV) and EPIR Technologies, Inc. (EPIR) announce the development of new solar cell materials that Sunovia and EPIR believe will rival the most efficient multi-junction solar cell performance in existence today at significantly less cost. Sunovia and EPIR plan to accomplish this by uniquely combining the most prevalent photovoltaic (PV) semiconductors in the market today, cadmium telluride (CdTe) and silicon (Si), into a breakthrough multi-junction solar cell that leverages the economies of scale and manufacturing infrastructure that is associated with these materials. The enabling high-throughput manufacturing technologies for growing CdTe on Si have been proven by the University of Illinois at Chicago and successfully transferred by EPIR into night vision sensors over the past decade. Today, the technologies that have enabled the commercialization of night vision sensors and military superiority through
"Owning the Night" are now being used to accelerate the development of next generation, multi-junction solar cell materials that position Sunovia and EPIR for "Owning the Daylight" in the future.

These breakthrough materials, which have been proven within night vision infrared (IR) systems for many years, will initially be applied to concentrator PV (CPV) systems with dramatically reduced price points from what is available today. The companies believe this will enable solar based electricity generation at prices equal to and even lower than current grid
supplied power from non-renewable sources. CPV systems use optics and tracking mechanisms to "concentrate" the sun's rays into a smaller area, therefore requiring less solar cell material for the same amount of electricity as compared to a traditional flat-plate solar panel that does not use concentrator optics. As the deposition processes are further refined and increased in throughput, low cost high-efficiency solar cells for specialty and terrestrial applications using flat-plate systems, as opposed to CPV systems, will be commercialized. In the future, new
materials and technologies will be applied in ultra-high volume deposition processes to create thin films on flexible substrates for residential, commercial and utility power generation products with very high production capacities and high velocity time to market deployments. The companies anticipate that revenues from IR materials will begin in 2008 with revenues from advanced CPV materials following after the IR technology is transferred to EPIR's next generation solar cell manufacturing facilities, currently in development.

Until now, semiconductors for PV applications have essentially come in two forms; high-efficiency, high cost solar cells created from multi-junction III-V semiconductors, and lower cost solar sells made from crystalline silicon and amorphous thin films. While II-VI solar cell
materials such as CdTe have shown promise, the lack of suitable low cost substrates on which to deposit high quality single crystal thin films have relegated these very efficient materials to polycrystalline films having low-efficiency on heavy glass substrates. In contrast to the approximate 16% efficiency attained under the best conditions (and less than 10% efficiency in real world modules) at different laboratories for amorphous or polycrystalline CdTe solar cells, the EPIR calculations for single crystal CdTe solar cells gave an efficiency of 24% using realistic
assumptions and numbers characteristic of CdTe of typical crystal quality for material grown on silicon by high throughput molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) deposition methods developed by EPIR. This efficiency was calculated assuming no antireflection coating and no back mirroring under a one sun intensity with a terrestrial solar spectrum and with the standard global
tilt of 37 degrees (AM1.5G). The calculation was performed for a cell having a thin top layer of n-type CdS on 4 (Mu)m of p-type CdTe, the most common CdTe solar cell configuration. For a CdTe solar cell of a proprietary design, EPIR calculated an efficiency that is above 26%. EPIR
believes a maximum efficiency above 30% is achievable for optimized two-junction CdTe/Si solar cells in which both the CdTe and the Si act as solar energy absorbers. The results of these detailed calculations indicate that the upper limits of energy conversion efficiencies of solar cells
employing group II-VI semiconductors such as CdTe rival those of present solar cells using the corresponding group III-V semiconductors such as gallium arsenide (GaAs), with much greater manufacturability and significantly lower cost.

The companies believe the above results indicate that the EPIR CdTe/Si, and more generally II-VI based technology, has the potential to displace the high cost III-V based technology, particularly in CPV systems for power plants. The results also indicate that technologies based on EPIR's novel high throughput MBE deposition technique for growing epitaxial crystalline
CdTe or CdTe/Si should displace the current amorphous or polycrystalline CdTe cells and Si cells, respectively.

Dr. J. Garland of EPIR Technologies, formerly Professor of Physics at the University of Illinois, states that "As an environmentalist, I am really excited by these results and by the rapid progress EPIR is making toward the manufacture of II-VI based solar cells. Renewable energy sources such as solar energy must be used to preserve the earth for future generations and for our national security. Solar power needs only a reduction in cost to turn the corner and become a primary source of energy here and around the world, and I believe that the EPIR II-VI technology can provide the necessary cost reduction."

Sunovia and EPIR have exclusively partnered to commercialize solar and IR technologies for the renewable energy and night vision markets. Sunovia is the exclusive marketer of all products, technologies and intellectual properties that are developed by EPIR, and currently owns a significant equity interest in EPIR. EPIR is the world leader in R&D on II-VI materials
and devices for IR detection and imaging for night vision, missile tracking, exploration in space and other applications. The manufacturability of II-VI based IR focal plane arrays for IR imaging shows that II-VI materials grown by MBE have reached a maturity level worthy of
solar cell production. Furthermore, EPIR has now completed a major facility for the manufacture of CdTe on silicon and for the development of improved solar cells based on II-VI materials.

Solar Power Purchase Agreements Spur Growth

SAN FRANCISCO, April 1, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- MMA Renewable Ventures, LLC, a subsidiary of Municipal Mortgage & Equity, LLC ("MuniMae") (Pink Sheets: MMAB) today announced that it closed 2007 with approximately 34 megawatts (MW) of solar under operation and development, including more than 20 MW of new renewable energy generation last year alone, an increase of more than five times its 2006 portfolio. In total, MMA Renewable Ventures brought projects into operation at 18 sites across the U.S. in 2007, among them, North America's largest solar photovoltaic system at Nellis Air Force Base (14MW). The successful growth solidifies MMA Renewable Ventures' position as one of North America's largest solar power
purchase agreement (PPA) providers. The company's expanding project pipeline also includes over $100 million in energy efficiency projects and 100 MW in additional renewable energy sources including wind and bioenergy.

"We saw a robust increase in demand for solar PPAs during 2007, growth that we have already seen persisting through the first part of 2008 as energy customers across the country continue to look for easy, cost-effective ways to take advantage of clean, predictable energy from the sun," said Matt Cheney, CEO of MMA Renewable Ventures. "In total, these systems will decrease carbon dioxide emissions by more than 63 million pounds each year."

Through the PPA model it helped pioneer, MMA Renewable Ventures makes solar energy cost-competitive by financing, owning and operating the installations on behalf of its customers and investors. In turn, the energy customer simply purchases the power generated under a long-term contract, benefiting from predictable electricity pricing and a solar energy system
that is cash flow positive from its first day of operation. MMA Renewable Ventures arranges for third party institutional investment in its solar projects. The company typically structures financing by aggregating a number of its high- quality solar projects into low risk debt and
tax-advantaged institutional investor funds, which enable multiple investors to participate while at the same time diversifying their risk.

"In addition to sound state policies that promote solar energy, innovations in clean energy project finance have helped open the doors for unprecedented U.S. solar market expansion in this past year. With MMA Renewable Ventures helping to lead the way, the PPA model has emerged as one of the most effective mechanisms for making solar cost-effective for commercial and large-scale energy customers," said Sara Birmingham, Director of Western Policy for The Solar Alliance.

"MMA Renewable Ventures consistently delivers on its promise of providing competitively priced clean energy for its customers and exceptional investment opportunities in solar energy," said Michael L. Falcone, CEO of MuniMae. "We are proud to count MMA Renewable Ventures'
growing project portfolio among the high-quality investment opportunities that MuniMae offers its institutional investors."

In 2007 MMA Renewable Ventures delivered customized solar PPAs to commercial, utility, and public energy customers nationwide. In addition to the landmark PV system at Nellis Air Force Base, the company's operational portfolio for the year includes commercial-scale installations at Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) and Estee Lauder as well as east and west coast locations for Roche Pharmaceuticals. Municipal customers include AC Transit, and the City of Thousand Oaks. MMA Renewable Ventures also added a number of academic institutions to its portfolio, including: CSU Fresno, Sussex County Community College in Newton, New Jersey and the Happy Valley Elementary School District in Anderson, California.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Solar Lawn Mower to Help Lower Emmissions

GUELPH, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 4, 2008) - Linamar Corporation (TSX:LNR) has entered the consumer products market with electric motor technology powering a 'green' electric lawnmower. Linamar's innovative motor offers the convenience of an environmental friendly electric mower with the cutting power of a traditional internal combustion engine.

The motor technology, produced by Linamar Consumer Products, a Linamar Company, is known as the Terra Phase Power System. The Terra Phase motor is literally the driving force of Linamar's lawnmower product and creates performance comparable to a traditional gas motor.

Solar Electric Mower

The Linamar cordless, electric mower uses no oil, no gas and can last up-to an hour on one battery charge. The addition of a solar re-charge option makes this product a truly green alternative for maintaining your lawn.

"We are excited to introduce our Terra Phase motor technology to the public, it's a product we are very proud of and it unites many of our core competencies of research, development, innovation and assembly. Plus, it has a tremendously positive impact on our environment," said Linda Hasenfratz, CEO of Linamar Corporation.

Retailers have been enthusiastic about the product and its environmental benefits. Three major retailers will carry the lawnmower this spring, including The Home Depot who recognizes Linamar's lawnmower as part of its "Eco Options" line-up of environmentally friendly products, which consists of over 1,500 SKU's.

"Mow Down Pollution, is a joint program between The Home Depot & Clean Air Foundation, introduced to encourage consumers to replace old gas lawnmowers with more efficient and environmentally friendly alternatives, such as Linamar's electric mower," said Annette Verschuren, President of The Home Depot Canada & Asia. "The Home Depot carries more than 1,500 Eco Options products and is pleased to carry Linamar's Solaris lawnmowers in our stores this spring."

The Home Depot's Eco Options label identifies products for consumers that have less of an impact on the environment than conventional products. To be certified as an Eco Options product, suppliers must answer a series of detailed questions and provide supporting documentation proving their products environmental benefits.

Inkjet Printer Provides Solution For Solar to Hydrogen Process

SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--FUJIFILM Dimatix, the world's leading supplier of drop-on-demand inkjet printheads for industrial applications, today announced that its cartridge-based Dimatix Materials Printer (DMP) has been used to assist researchers in devising a novel method of rapidly producing, testing and optimizing new materials that hold promise for efficiently producing hydrogen from water and sunlight.

The new inkjet-based method developed by researchers at the Department of Chemistry at Colorado State University relied on a FUJIFILM Dimatix DMP-2800 Materials Printer to quantify the optimal proportions and deposition conditions of promising new metal oxides by precision-printing controlled arrays of finely-graded compounds onto transparent conductive substrates.

The new method allowed the researchers to more readily quantify mixtures of compounds in a printed matrix that were the most promising candidates for further research. Using it, the researchers were able to isolate a particular chemical compound that has potential for water photoelectrolysis. (Water photoelectrolysis – also known as “solar water splitting” – involves converting sunlight into an electrical current, and using that current to divide water into hydrogen and oxygen. Photoelectrolysis process efficiency is critical for energy-efficient hydrogen production.)

Precision jetting and other advanced features of the FUJIFILM Dimatix Materials Printer allowed the researchers to accurately determine droplet volumes of the different compound gradients, the number of nozzles firing, the jetting waveform for individual nozzles and the frequency of nozzle firing. “All of these parameters are important for a quantitative determination of the amount of each component printed within the combinatorial template,” said Michael Woodhouse, PhD, a Colorado State University researcher who worked with Professor Bruce Parkinson, and who is now on the research staff of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

The Dimatix Materials Printer, which was used with Dimatix Materials Cartridges to jet 10-picoliter-sized droplets, also allowed the researchers to further optimize the performance of the most promising metal oxide compounds by printing different spot densities or multiple layers in order to vary the thickness of the resulting multicomponent metal oxide film; and to test entirely new compounds in a controlled fashion by adding other materials to the optimized composition.

The compound optimized during the research is composed of three common elements – aluminum, cobalt and iron – providing hope that the method can be used to find new solar water splitting materials that are not only functional but also inexpensive, said Dr. Woodhouse.

“As oil prices continue to rise and political and environmental problems become more of a concern, the quest to discover such materials for the production of alternative transportation fuels becomes very appealing,” he explained.

The research was funded by a U.S. Department of Energy grant and has been published by the American Chemical Society journal, Chemistry of Materials (http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/cm703099j).

The Dimatix Materials Printer is a turnkey, bench-top materials deposition system that leverages FUJIFILM Dimatix’ industry-leading ink jet technology and Shaped Piezo Silicon™ MEMS fabrication processes in depositing picoliter-sized droplets of functional fluids on all types of surfaces. By employing single-use cartridges that researchers can fill with their own fluid materials, the DMP system minimizes waste of expensive fluid materials, thereby eliminating the cost and complexity associated with traditional product development and prototyping. The DMP is suitable for prototyping and low-volume manufacturing, and the technology is scalable from R&D to production.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Completes Solar Project

NOVATO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Novato-based SolarCraft announced today the completion of design & installation of a 124 kW solar electric system for Jacuzzi Family Vineyards in Sonoma, CA.

The 124 kW solar electric system at Jacuzzi Family Vineyards in compromised of two separate solar energy systems. Each system uses 374 Mitsubishi Electric 165 watt panels and one Satcon 50 kW inverter, for a total system use of 748 solar panels and 2 inverters.

“Our commitment to sustainable business practices is extremely important to us and it’s a great feeling to know that our winery is being powered by solar energy. Overall, I am impressed with how painless the process was from start to finish." Fred Cline, Jacuzzi Family Vineyard

The system is 124 kW DC power and is CEC rated at 103 kW AC power. The solar electric system will produce an estimated 185,130 kWh annually, not including any additional production from the tracking array which could potentially add an additional 37,026 kWh annually, for a total of 222,156 kWh.

The new solar energy system generates enough clean electricity each day to power 82 average homes. The new system will spare the air nearly 91 tons of harmful greenhouse gases annually, or 2,726 tons over the life of the system. Over the next 30 years, the air pollution saved will be equivalent to driving over 6.3 million miles.

One solar energy system provides nearly 100% of the electricity for the Water Well and Fire Pumps. This 61.7 kW system is comprised of two different mounting systems that hold the solar panels in a fixed position facing directly south. Single pole mount & ground-mount structures were used due to limited ground space.

The remaining 61.7 kW portion is mounted on a Single Axis Tracking system, allowing the solar panels to follow the sun throughout the day, providing 15-20% more energy production. A solar energy panel produces the greatest amount of electricity when it is perpendicular to the sun -- as opposed to an angle.

The system is currently the largest test case known for comparison between tracking and fixed arrays with identical equipment on the same site. SolarCraft will be monitoring the system very closely with a remote monitoring system and using the data to determine the exact benefits versus cost of tracking systems.

VioSolar Lands $172 Million For Solar Project Funding

ATHENS, Greece--(BUSINESS WIRE)--VioSolar Inc. (the ‘Company’) (OTCBB:VIOSF) (FWB:SDE) is pleased to announce that it has signed a Letter of Intent with SCAIAP Capital Partners S.a.r.l. Luxembourg (“SCAIAP”) for a funding of 110 million euros (approximately $172,000,000 USD). VioSolar Inc. and SCAIAP will establish the VioSolar Opportunity Fund (“the Fund”) (Luxembourg) which will manage the funds for solar park purposes. The funding will be an “off-balance-sheet” event and VioSolar will retain a fifty percent interest in the profits generated by the Fund.

“I am very pleased with the result of the negotiations we had with Mr. Peter Herold, founder of SCAIAP, and his team and the subsequent signing of this letter of intent,” stated Rick Walchuk, President and Chief Executive Officer, of VioSolar Inc. “This funding is the culmination of many months of hard work by our team at VioSolar and underscores the strengths of our mandate, business plan and management. It is a privilege to be working with Mr. Herold, SCAIAP and his colleagues,” added Mr. Walchuk.

“We look forward to working with VioSolar Inc. towards the completion of this funding and the joint venture that we are about to embark on.” said Mr. Peter Herold. “Solar parks and solar technology are very much in the forefront of many investors thinking and our association with VioSolar is a fantastic fit for us and our investors. We anticipate a six to eight month time frame in order to have the funds in place, at which time VioSolar Opportunity Fund would be in a great position financially to fulfill its mandate,” also stated Mr. Herold.

Yingli Green Energy Enters Korean Solar Market

BAODING, China--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Yingli Green Energy Holding Company Limited (NYSE: YGE) (“Yingli Green Energy” or the “Company”), one of the world’s leading vertically integrated photovoltaic (“PV”) product manufacturers, today announced that it has signed sales contracts with two Korean companies: Korea Electric Power Industrial Development Corporation (“KEPID”) , a renewable energy company, and Kaycom Corporation (“Kaycom”), a distributor of electronic components and PV devices.

Under the terms of the contracts, Yingli Green Energy will deliver 1.3 MW of PV modules to KEPID by the end of April 2008 and 2.0 MW of PV modules to Kaycom by the end of May 2008. The PV modules to be provided by the Company under these contracts will be installed in KEPID’s planned 1.8MW project in Naju, Jeon la nam-Do, Korea and Kaycom’s Daelim Hae - Nam Project in Haenam-Gun, Jeon la nam-Do, Korea.

“Following successful achievements in Spain and Germany, I am pleased to announce these contracts with KEPID and Kaycom, which mark our first step in Korea’s growing solar market,” commented Mr. Liansheng Miao, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Yingli Green Energy. “Korea is expected to play an increasingly important role in the development of the alternative energy industry, especially due to its favorable feed-in-tariff policy. We believe that cooperating with KEPID and Kaycom will help us strengthen our global strategic development by establishing a presence in the Korean market.”

Dell's Worldwide HQ 100% Green Powered

ROUND ROCK, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dell (NASDAQ: DELL) is now powering 100 percent of its 2.1 million square-foot global headquarters campus, home to more than 10,000 employees, with 100 percent green power, the latest step in meeting the company’s 2008 carbon neutral commitment.

“It’s time for our industry to take a lead role in creating a clean energy future,” said Paul Bell, president, Dell Americas. “Today, we are challenging every technology company to work with their suppliers and partners in integrating green power and energy-efficient strategies into their operations.”

“Powering an entire campus with green power, in partnership with these two leading companies, is an important step in becoming the greenest technology company on the planet and the right thing to do for our shared earth,” said Mr. Bell. “At the same time we’re using green technology to drive operating expense down.”

Dell is using all of the power generated from Waste Management’s Austin Community Landfill gas-to-energy plant, meeting 40 percent of Dell headquarters’ campus power needs. The remaining 60 percent comes from existing wind farms and is provided by TXU Energy.

Dell also announced today it is increasing green power use for its Austin Parmer Campus, provided by Austin Energy, from eight to 17 percent. The company is a leading participant in Austin Energy’s GreenChoice® power program. Dell also is powering its Twin Falls, Idaho, facility with 100 percent green power, 97 percent of which is wind power and three percent solar.

In September 2007, Dell announced it would make company owned and leased facilities “carbon neutral” in 2008 through a strategy of improving energy-efficiency in its operations and maximizing the purchase of renewable power. This commitment is part of the company’s climate strategy which also seeks to minimize carbon impact of supplier operations and customer product use.

Operational initiatives to increase efficiency and reduce electricity use already implemented on Dell’s central Texas campuses are expected to save the company nearly $2 million annually in operating costs and cutting CO2 equivalent emissions by nearly 12,000 tons per year. The purchase of green power gives Dell price certainty on its operational costs for power, and the company expects it may see cost benefits to using green power in the future.

Dell’s green technology solutions include the OptiPlex 755 and Inspiron 531 desktops, Latitude D630 laptop, PowerEdge M-Series blades and PowerEdge Energy Smart servers. The company’s desktop systems alone have helped customers save more than $2.2 billion and avoid approximately 22.4 million tons of CO2.

“We’re very pleased that our Austin Community Landfill’s gas to energy project will play a key role in Dell’s commitment to using renewable energy. This project is part of our company’s environmental initiative to increase the production of waste based energy. Today, we create enough energy for the equivalent of 1 million homes each year and by 2020 we expect to double that output, producing enough energy for the equivalent of more than 2 million homes,” said David Steiner, chief executive officer of Waste Management, Inc.

“This is yet another example of TXU Energy’s commitment to offering renewable power choices that are good for business and the environment,” said Jim Burke, chief executive officer for TXU Energy “TXU Energy is dedicated to improving our use of renewable power and encouraging greater energy efficiency, both of which help preserve our environment.”

“For Dell to partner with Waste Management and TXU to source renewable energy on this scale is great news,” said Steve Howard, CEO of The Climate Group. “Greening the company’s Texas operations not only underpins Dell’s bold carbon neutral commitment but helps drive clean energy investment and tackles climate change.”

SolarCity Brings Solar Power To the Little Guy

FOSTER CITY, Calif., April 2, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- SolarCity, a leading provider of solar energy systems, today announced a new financing program backed by Morgan Stanley that will change the way residential solar is purchased. SolarLease, the first residential financing program to be provided directly by an installer, offers homeowners an affordable way to go solar without significant upfront costs, and adds exclusive benefits not available with cash purchases.

SolarLease makes solar power an economically attainable option for most homeowners. Because SolarCity owns the solar panels, the company can gain access to commercial tax credits and apply the savings to customer financing. Financing solar energy systems therefore becomes significantly more affordable, as monthly payments for most customers are less than their
previous utility charges. In addition, the upfront payment is significantly less: a four-bedroom homeowner can install a solar system for an initial payment of about $2,000 where previously the same system would require a $25,000 cash investment. SolarLease makes going solar easier as well as more affordable -- with financing, installation, performance guarantees and lifetime support all from one vendor.

"We've wanted to go solar for quite a long time," said Don Crevy, an early leasing customer. "With SolarLease we can immediately get all the advantages of solar energy ... without blowing our budget." "It's a total win-win!" added Ginger, Don's wife.

California is a vast and untapped market for solar: currently, less than one percent of California homeowners have installed solar electric systems. The SolarLease program has the scale to support thousands of residential solar installations and will rapidly accelerate the number of installations completed in the last 20 years.

"Customers have called for alternatives to solar purchasing, and our innovations in financing will allow them to get the benefits of renewable energy quickly, easily and affordably," said David Arfin, Vice President of Customer Financing at SolarCity.

"By eliminating the significant upfront capital requirement, solar power is now a truly affordable energy option," said Lyndon Rive, the company's Founder and Chief Executive Officer. "We believe this will spark a great wave of solar adoption. Dollar for dollar, if you had the option of using clean solar power or dirty coal power, which would you choose?" he said.

In addition to SolarCity's deployment strength and installation expertise, SolarLease customers will greatly benefit by the company's ability to directly administer product financing through a banking partnership with Morgan Stanley.

"We are excited about this joint venture opportunity and to help make solar energy an economically viable alternative to the residential consumer. This transaction will allow the consumer to source environmentally friendly power without having to make a large capital
investment," said Aaron Lubowitz, Managing Director at Morgan Stanley.