Report: Cost of PV dropped 30 percent in 10 years

21 October 2009– A report from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory said the price of photovoltaic systems in the United States dropped 30 percent from 1998 to 2008.

Costs in 2008 fell 4 percent mainly because the price of PV modules went down, according to the report, Tracking the Sun II(/downloads.pennnet.com/lbnl/sun.pdf). More factories producing PV modules, along with the recession, helped prices fall.

From 1998 until 2007, the cost of PV systems fell mainly because labor, marketing and other expenses got cheaper, the report said. The average installed costs, in 2008 dollars, fell from $10.80 per watt to $7.50 per watt during the 11-year period.

Arizona had the lowest installed costs in 2008 at $7.30 per watt. Pennsylvania and Ohio were the most expensive, with average installed costs at $9.90 per watt.

After incentives, net costs for residential PV systems were $5.40 per watt in 2008, up 1 percent from 2007. For commercial systems, net costs were $4.20 per watt, up 5 percent from 2007.
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