Director of National Center for Photovoltaics to Present at UB's "Business of Energy" Workshop

Release Date: August 31, 2010 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The director of the Department of Energy's National Center for Photovoltaics will join other industry insiders to discuss emerging solar technologies, business opportunities and government incentive programs at a public workshop in Amherst hosted by Directed Energy, the University at Buffalo's alternative energy business incubator program.

The event, "Photovoltaics—Silicon and Beyond," is scheduled for Sept. 15 at the Buffalo Niagara Marriott at 1340 Millersport Highway. On-site registration and a continental breakfast begin at 8 a.m. The program runs from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Registration fees include lunch and range from $35 to $120 depending on registration date and affiliation. Early bird registration ends Sept. 3. For information or to register, visit

Panelists will examine how competing technologies, technical challenges, incentives and current and proposed standards and laws could affect photovoltaic (solar cell) industry stakeholders including manufacturers, utilities, municipalities and business and residential consumers.

Besides Ryne Raffaelle, director of the National Center for Photovoltaics at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, confirmed speakers include Wayne Chang, president of Pivotry Consulting Group Inc.; Shaun Chapman, east coast campaigns director for the Vote Solar Initiative; Alan Rae, managing partner of TPF Enterprises LLC and technical editor of Global Solar Technology; Robert Shibley, UB campus architect, founder of UB's Urban Design Project and chair of UB's environmental stewardship committee; and David Watson, a UB associate professor in chemistry whose work has implications for the next generation of photovoltaic materials.

"Our half-day conference is of value to both academics and industry and showcases prominent panelists discussing technical advancements and business opportunities in solar cells," says Martin Casstevens, director of Directed Energy and business formation and commercialization manager for UB's Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach. "Photovoltaics or solar cells have more or less become established sources of renewable energy. Incentives and price reductions can make adoption of existing silicon technology more attractive. On the horizon are new materials which promise greater efficiencies and far lower costs."

"Photovoltaics—Silicon and Beyond" is the third in Directed Energy's 2010 "The Business of Energy" series. The fourth and last workshop this year is planned for November and will focus on the Marcellus Shale. The series, ideal for both industry veterans and newcomers, offers a unique opportunity to learn about what's new in alternative energy, exchange ideas and network with peers and potential business partners.

"The Business of Energy" is part of Directed Energy's effort to support an alternative energy technical and business cluster in Western New York. Series and event sponsors include UB, Hodgson Russ LLP, Buffalo Niagara Enterprise and National Grid, along with Buffalo Niagara Partnership, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, and the Consulate General of Canada in Buffalo.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB's more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

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Charlotte Hsu is a former staff writer in University Communications. To contact UB's media relations staff, email or visit our list of current university media contacts.