Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A groundbreaking in Newport, and solar plant planned for Portland

The Portland Business Journal reports that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will break ground on its Newport Marine Operations Center on June 3 at 10 a.m.

The event follows several months of limbo after Washington state leaders contested NOAA's move to Newport. After review, NOAA reaffirmed the decision to base the center in Newport. The Oregon coast location won the project over three competing cities in Washington. Newport was chosen for its ocean access, proximity to the Hatfield Marine Science Center, and funding support from Oregon's legislature.

A second story from the Portland Business Journal reports on a California company seeking $25 million in state funds to build a large solar manufacturing plant near Portland. If approved, the award would be the largest in Oregon's 30-year Energy Loan Program history.

Solexant Corporation is considering sites near Gresham and Wilsonville for production of ultra-thin-film solar cells. The company has an exclusive license to use a nanocrystal technology developed at the University of California, Berkeley. The technology increases solar cell efficiency while reducing manufacturing costs.

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