NOVA: Saved by the Sun Series

Lectures curated around NOVA: Saved by the Sun, which examines how innovative ideas for solving the climate crisis are driving a renaissance in solar energy around the world.

This program probes how innovative technologies, new business models, increasing financial incentives, and a growing grassroots commitment to solving the climate crisis are driving a renaissance in solar energy around the world. Across the U.S., solar panels are capping more and more roofs. In Germany, a "great wall" of solar panels lines the autobahn, feeding the Munich power grid. At Cal Tech, nanotechnology is spurring new solar inventions. Worldwide, solar energy is expected to be a $50 billion industry within a decade.As the Earth heats up at a dangerous rate and fossil fuels become scarcer, ordinary citizens and businesses are bypassing the federal government to lead the way in exploring a clean, renewable source of power: the sun. In this report, NOVA shines a light on how and why people across America and the world are "going solar," using radiant energy of the sun to power homes, businesses, and even entire communities. But can everyday people really make a difference by using solar power? And can solar technologies, with their high cost and logistical challenges, truly play a bigger role in powering the future of humanity? The grand hopes, latest innovations, roiling controversies, and practical realities of solar power all come to the fore in this program.In the 1970s, at the height of an earlier energy crisis, solar power looked like the trend of the future President Jimmy Carter even installed solar panels on the White House. But in the ensuing decades, as the price of gas and oil dropped, solar power lost favor and failed to make a significant contribution to the nation's power grid. Now, with rising energy needs and wars in the Middle East pushing energy prices higher, the world has been forced to take another look. Could it be time to take solar energy seriously again?

Lectures curated around NOVA: Saved by the Sun, which examines how innovative ideas for solving the climate crisis are driving a renaissance in solar energy around the world.

This program probes how innovative technologies, new business models, increasing financial incentives, and a growing grassroots commitment to solving the climate crisis are driving a renaissance in solar energy around the world. Across the U.S., solar panels are capping more and more roofs. In Germany, a "great wall" of solar panels lines the autobahn, feeding the Munich power grid. At Cal Tech, nanotechnology is spurring new solar inventions. Worldwide, solar energy is expected to be a $50 billion industry within a decade.As the Earth heats up at a dangerous rate and fossil fuels become scarcer, ordinary citizens and businesses are bypassing the federal government to lead the way in exploring a clean, renewable source of power: the sun. In this report, NOVA shines a light on how and why people across America and the world are "going solar," using radiant energy of the sun to power homes, businesses, and even entire communities. But can everyday people really make a difference by using solar power? And can solar technologies, with their high cost and logistical challenges, truly play a bigger role in powering the future of humanity? The grand hopes, latest innovations, roiling controversies, and practical realities of solar power all come to the fore in this program.In the 1970s, at the height of an earlier energy crisis, solar power looked like the trend of the future President Jimmy Carter even installed solar panels on the White House. But in the ensuing decades, as the price of gas and oil dropped, solar power lost favor and failed to make a significant contribution to the nation's power grid. Now, with rising energy needs and wars in the Middle East pushing energy prices higher, the world has been forced to take another look. Could it be time to take solar energy seriously again?