There always seems to be enough money to support large programs. Until the programs run out of money to support.
Solar approaching grid parity in U.S., a story written by my colleague Dylan McGrath at EE Times, predicts two-thirds of the U.S. will achieve grid parity by 2015. Grid parity is the point at which electricity generated from photovoltaics is equal in cost or less expensive than grid power.
At that point, solar power will be no more than 5 cents per kilowatt hour more expensive than grid power for 99 percent of the country, according to Travis Bradford, founder and president of the non-profit research group The Prometheus Institute for Sustainable Development.
Bradford said solar in the U.S. will get a big boost from economic subsidies as part of the financial rescue package enacted by the U.S. and from the huge fiscal stimulus. He said that the U.S. has a shot to become the biggest market for photovoltaics and one of the largest producers over the next few years.
Contrast that to another news story by Dylan McGrath.
According to a recent report by the National Research Council the U.S. civil space program needs changes that would align it more closely with broader national goals in environmental, economic and strategic areas.
The report recommends revitalizing NASA's advanced technology development program by establishing an organization similar to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) within NASA.
In an opinion on the Apollo 11 coverage, George Leopold, EE Times news director, comes up with a definitive sense of direction for future scientific and technological developments: "In the final analysis, as the Apollo astronauts have observed, the moon landings heightened human awareness of the Earth as much as the moon."
Were it so, for broad national programs in 2009 as it was for the moon landing program in 1969.