Solar Energy Research Center Instrumentation Facility

Project: Research project


The past two decades have witnessed a dramatic increase in global energy consumption. While this need has been largely met by fossil fuels, the rapidly increasing global competition for this limited resource has generated growing concern over future availability. Couple this with the mounting evidence that CO2 emissions are adversely affecting the global climate, and it becomes increasingly clear that developing renewable carbon-neutral energy sources constitutes a grand challenge for the scientific community. The mission of UNC-SERC is to develop the materials and methods needed to fabricate the next generation of solar energy devices. With several federally funded research initiatives already in place, including a recently awarded Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC), UNC-SERC is addressing the fundamental issues that will drive new strategies for solar energy conversion and the engineering challenges that must be solved to convert discoveries made in the laboratory into commercially available devices. Access to state-of-the art instrumentation is critical to this effort.
The Congressionally Directed Project (CDP) funds will be used to enhance the capabilities of a shared solar energy research instrumentation laboratory within the UNC Solar Energy Research Center (UNC-SERC). The instrumentation purchased with this appropriation will augment equipment purchases made by the EFRC, expanding the capabilities of this important user facility.
Effective start/end date8/15/108/14/11


  • Department of Energy (DOE)


Solar energy
Fossil fuels
Energy conversion
Energy utilization