Gov. Rick Perry announced that the Texas Emerging Technology Fund (TETF) is investing $1.5 million in SolarBridge Technologies Inc. for the development and commercialization of their technology for the widespread use of solar energy.
“The TETF is helping create a culture of innovation in our state by moving Texans’ good ideas from the laboratory to the marketplace,” Gov. Perry said. “This investment in SolarBridge will help improve solar technology, and increase the use of solar energy.”
SolarBridge’s micro-inverter attaches directly to solar panels, helping address some of the concerns and shortcomings currently found in solar cell technology, including energy production efficiency, reliability and installation. The product provides greater reliability by eliminating the most failure prone components in solar cell technology, and will help move the market toward more secure distributed generation in the energy grid.
“We have succeeded in creating a module-integrated microinverter like nothing else on the market,” SolarBridge President and CEO Ron Van Dell said. “By making this investment in SolarBridge, the State of Texas recognizes the impact that our technology will have on making solar installations significantly more reliable and affordable.”
The TETF is a $200 million initiative created by the Texas Legislature in 2005 at the governor’s request, and reauthorized in 2007 and again in 2009. A 17-member advisory committee of high-tech leaders, entrepreneurs and research experts reviews potential projects and recommends funding allocations to the governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the House. To date, the TETF has allocated more than $129.5 million in funds to 100 early stage companies, and $153 million in grant matching and research superiority funds to Texas universities.