The extent and timing of cost-reducing improvements in low-carbon energy systems are important sources of uncertainty in future levels of greenhouse-gas emissions. Models that assess the costs of climate change mitigation policy, and energy policy in general, rely heavily on learning curves to include technology dynamics. Historically, no energy technology has changed more dramatically than photovoltaics (PV), the cost of which has declined by a factor of nearly 100 since the 1950s. Which changes were most important in accounting for the cost reductions that have occurred over the past three decades? Are these results consistent with the notion that learning from experience drove technical change? In this paper, empirical data are assembled to populate a simple model identifying the most important factors affecting the cost of PV. The results indicate that learning from experience, the theoretical mechanism used to explain learning curves, only weakly explains change in the most important factors—plant size, module efficiency, and the cost of silicon. Ways in which the consideration of a broader set of influences, such as technical barriers, industry structure, and characteristics of demand, might be used to inform energy technology policy are discussed.
Energy Policy – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 2006
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera