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Solargystics sets sights on more affordable solar power

The earth pulls in more energy from the sun in one hour than is consumed in one year. That's an estimated 970 trillion kilowatt hours of energy every day. But solar power contributes less than one-half of 1 percent of the world's daily power generation.

Solargystics, a Sylvania-based startup solar company with lofty goals, would like to change that by making solar energy more affordable for everyone.

Solargystics has developed patent-pending technology aimed at lowering the cost of thin film photovoltaic production. The company would like to see nothing more than people ditching the shingles on top of their homes in favor of cost-efficient solar panels.

The idea while not yet on the market certainly has generated some interest. The company is working on its process with the Wright Center for Photovoltaic Innovation and Commercialization at the University of Toledo where the company has access to testing equipment it couldn't obtain on its own. The researchers, originally from Michigan, moved the company to Ohio in 2007, hoping to obtain funding from the state's Third Frontier program.

Even though that grant proposal was denied, David Hiatt, the company's chief financial officer, says Solargystics is still seeking funding. And company officials are still optimistic.

"We're like everybody else," he says. "It's tough to be a startup with limited funding."

The company currently employs four people, but contracts a number of people in the Toledo area, Hiatt says, adding that more employees will be added when the product reaches commercialization.

"It's coming along just slowly," he adds.

Source: David Hiatt, Solargystics
Writer: Colin McEwen
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