For the past six years, a major US oil and gas holding company has been collaborating with the National Renewable Energy Lab on new breakthrough perovskite solar cell research. What a twist! The effort has been conducted through a relatively new division of the firm and it hasn’t attracted much attention, except that earlier this month they finally let something slip on the newswires and now the cat’s out of the bag.
Oil Company Hearts Perovskite Solar Cells
The holding company in question is Hunt Consolidated, Inc., parent of the 80-year-old privately held global oil and gas leader Hunt Oil and of a somewhat lesser known entity called Hunt Perovskite Technologies.
So, why has a major fossil fuel company been collaborating with NREL on cutting edge research leading to the next generation of low cost solar cells?
After all, other global oil and gas stakeholders are venturing into renewable energy. However, they are mainly focused on market-proven technologies that don’t disrupt their fossil fuel business, at least not for the time being.
Hunt’s new perovskite research is a whole ‘nother kettle of fish. It could have a profound, widespread impact on the energy marketplace and accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to renewables.
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