The solar photovoltaic sector is moving forward very fast, both in terms of its own technological advancement and its standing among global renewable energy technologies. Rapid increases in solar cell efficiencies, fast technical change in solar batteries and solar glass, and economies of scale in production fuel its rapid adoption, and it is becoming clear that existing forecasts about its adoption need to be updated extensively. This timely and distinctive examination of the economic side of the field takes into account solar PV’s recent and growing lead among renewable energies competing to replace fossil fuels.
The Revolution in Energy Technology examines the birth of this technology in the United States, where the main innovators are still located, the emergence of China as a main production hub, and new and growing contributions to the innovation cascades from other countries including Germany, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. The participation of universities as investors and the role of venture capital are discussed, and particular emphasis is given to the domination of the sector by large firms.
The book is interesting for both academics and graduate students as well as policy-makers, technicians, engineers and companies involved in the field.