Funding Opportunity Announcement: FY 2018 Solar Energy Technologies Office

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Office: Solar Energy Technologies Office
Funding Number: DE-FOA-0001840
Funding Amount: $105.5 million

Description

The Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) will issue $105.5M in funding for about 70 projects that address the affordability, flexibility, and performance of solar technologies on the grid. This funding opportunity spans the office’s portfolio and seeks early-stage research projects that advance both solar photovoltaic (PV) and concentrating solar thermal power (CSP) technologies. Funding will also facilitate the swift integration of PV and CSP technologies into the nation’s electricity grid and support efforts that prepare the workforce for the solar industry’s future needs.

This funding opportunity combines all of SETO’s technology areas into one request. This consolidated funding strategy enables the office to accelerate its cycles of learning in solar research and reduce government overhead costs.

Awards will be separated into four topics:

  • TOPIC 1: Advanced Solar Systems Integration Technologies
    $46M, ~14 projects
    Systems integration projects will advance research that improves power electronics, solar plus storage, and PV-integrated sensor technologies and enables the seamless integration of solar energy onto the nation’s electricity grid.
  • TOPIC 2: Concentrating Solar Power Research and Development
    $24M, ~21 projects
    CSP projects support progress toward 2030 cost goals and will focus on advancing components found in CSP sub-systems, including collectors, power cycles, and thermal transport systems, while pursuing new methods for introducing innovation to CSP research.
  • TOPIC 3: Photovoltaics Research and Development
    $27M, ~28 projects
    PV projects support early-stage research that increase performance, reduce materials and processing costs, and improve reliability of PV cells, modules, and systems to enable the industry to achieve its 2030 cost goals. 
  • TOPIC 4: Improving and Expanding the Solar Industry through Workforce Initiatives
    $8.5M, ~4 projects
    Workforce projects seek to prepare the solar industry for a digital future while also increasing the number of veterans and participants in the solar industry.

SETO expects to make about 70 awards under the 2018 SETO FOA, each ranging between $200,000 and $4.5 million for a total investment of $105.5 million. Technical projects are required to have at least 20 percent cost share, yielding a total public-private investment of more than $125M.

Prior to submitting a full application for this opportunity, a brief, mandatory letter of intent is due on May 4 at 3:00PM ET and a concept paper is due on May 9 at 3:00PM ET. See all application deadlines in the table below and learn more about the 2018 SETO FOA's technical background.

Webinars

SETO hosted four webinars April 23-24, 2018 discussing each of the FOA’s topics. Webinar transcripts and presentations from the systems integration, CSP, PV, and workforce topics can all be found on the 2018 SETO FOA webinars page.

Key Dates

FOA Issue Date: April 17, 2018
Submission Deadline for Letter of Intent (LOI): May 4, 2018, 3:00PM ET
Submission Deadline for Concept Papers:
Applicants must submit a Concept Paper by 3:00pm ET on the due date listed above to be eligible to submit a full application. Topic Areas 2.1 and 3.1 SIPS applications must resubmit their LOI again as a concept paper by the concept paper deadline above to clear an administrative software restriction of EERE Exchange.
May 9, 2018, 3:00PM ET
Submission Deadline for Full Applications and SIPS Applications: July 5, 2018, 3:00PM ET
Expected Submission Deadline for Replies to Reviewer Comments: August 2, 2018, 3:00PM ET
Expected Timeframe for EERE Selection Notifications: September 3, 2018

Additional Information