Consortia Focused on Photovoltaic R&D, Manufacturing, and Testing: A Review of Existing Models and Structures.

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As the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Solar Energy Technologies Program prepares to initiate a new cost-shared research and development (R&D) effort on photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing, it is useful to review the experience to date with consortia focused on PV R&D, manufacturing, and testing. Information was gathered for this report by conducting interviews and accessing Web sites of 14 U.S. consortia and four European consortia, each with either a primary focus on or an emerging interest in PV technology R&D, manufacturing, or testing. Additional input was collected from several workshops held by the DOE and National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in 2009, which examined the practical steps -- including public-private partnerships and policy support -- necessary to enhance the United States' capacity to competitively manufacture photovoltaics. This report categorizes the 18 consortia into three groups: university-led consortia, industry-led consortia, and manufacturing and testing facilities consortia. The first section summarizes the organizations within the different categories, with a particular focus on the key benefits and challenges for each grouping. The second section provides a more detailed overview of each consortium, including the origins, goals, organization, membership, funding sources, and key contacts. This survey is a useful resource for stakeholders interested in PV manufacturing R&D, but should not imply endorsement of any of these groups.

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