29 Dec

When Solar gets cheaper than the grid

I’ve written about the fact that solar is getting cheaper and we’re hitting a near-parity point. The talking point that ‘green energy is too costly’ is based on information that’s a generation old at this point. It’s solar power *start up costs* that are too expensive ($10-$20K to set up a rig).

And it’s getting cheaper rapidly enough that the recent Solyndra debacle came about because after the company was created, Chinese manufacturers were able to make solar for so much cheaper that Solyndra couldn’t compete and collapsed.

The announcement that Foxconn is getting involved in solar manufacturing is a big one. It means further reduction in prices as robotic automation comes to solar manufacturing, and that Foxconn intends to bring margins from 30% down to 10%, passing that 20% on to customers.

The idea that there seems to be a Moore’s Law in solar power is starting to spread throughout more and more intellectual circles, I notice.

Add to that continuing amazing developments in solar technology happening.

Boing Boing now has a link to a Google Maps mashup where you can use a slider and look at when solar hits grid parity.

For those who asked, here is some previous TB coverage of solar power trends that make you go ‘hmmm’:

Solar Power has a Moore’s Law?

And Solar power trends.

Of course, typing solar into the search bar at the upper right is a quick way as well.