Solar energy is one of the most preferred way of harnessing energy but still there are some technical roadblocks such as system efficiency and cost which appears to be an expensive solution as compared to other solutions. However, you may not aware that the cost of PV (Photovoltaic) systems had actually dropped tremendously as compared to when it was ten years ago. According to the analysis report from Berkeley Lab, the cost of PV has dropped more than 30 percent since 1998 until last year, and is expected to continue the trend down the road.
One of the main reason of the declining cost is due to the mass production with high manufacturing capacity that eventually makes the the material cost more affordable. Besides the material cost, system installation cost is also claimed to have drop with approximately 25 percent from $10.80 per watt in 1998 to merely $7.5 per watt in 2008. This is an average value based on data collection from various states in United States since there are some deltas and among all those states, Arizona is one of the cheapest one with $7.3 per watt while Pennsylvania gets the highest of installation cost of $9.9 per watt. To be more accurate, this analysis data was actually based on small scale individual household installation and could be even cheaper for larger scale of deployment programs.
Obviously, this shows a good sign of solar energy system cost reduction and affordability and hopefully it will able to boost up its popularity together with overall system efficiency as an initiative towards greener environment.