Policy ForumRENEWABLE ENERGY

Terawatt-scale photovoltaics: Trajectories and challenges

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Science  14 Apr 2017:
Vol. 356, Issue 6334, pp. 141-143
DOI: 10.1126/science.aal1288

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Summary

The annual potential of solar energy far exceeds the world's total energy consumption. However, the vision of photovoltaics (PVs) providing a substantial fraction of global electricity generation and total energy demand is far from being realized. What technical, infrastructure, economic, and policy barriers need to be overcome for PVs to grow to the multiple terawatt (TW) scale? We assess realistic future scenarios and make suggestions for a global agenda to move toward PVs at a multi-TW scale.