An “unprecedented ramp-up of production capacity” over the next two decades is needed to provide enough solar power to completely decarbonize the global electrical system, but that goal can be achieved, according to an analysis led by researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
The analysis is intended to capture the scale and temporal dynamics of the financing needed to build the manufacturing capacity to produce enough PV modules. Among the assumptions the researchers made is that after the decarbonization goal is reached, manufacturers will be reluctant to build new factories because of the drop in demand trajectories for PV modules. The factories are assumed to have a 15-year lifetime, so new ones will only be built if they are projected to sustain full output throughout their useful lifetime.
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