Since its invention nearly 50 years ago, solar electric power has been a reliable but relatively expensive technology. Now, however, the cost to produce electricity from sunlight is coming down. Climbing utility rates, combined with the rebates that some states offer, are making photovoltaic (PV) power systems cost-effective in many parts of the country.
In 1975 I started a company in Northern California that specialized in solar thermal hot-water systems. While we still install those systems, the bulk of our business these days comes from designing and installing PV energy systems for residential, commercial, and municipal clients. Sum total, we've installed over a megawatt (one million watts)...
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