You can obtain the 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Solar Energy as a stand-alone credential. Courses in the 12-credit solar energy graduate certificate can prepare you to lead project development in the rapidly expanding solar energy sector. Depending on the course path you choose, the curriculum will cover topics such as:
- full systems perspective of a solar energy project, including financial policies and analysis tools required for development and implementation
- design tools, solar policies, financing tools, and factors affecting the short term and lifecycle costs of solar energy systems
- physical qualities of the solar resource, estimation of the fractional contributions of irradiance to total demand, and economic assessment of the solar resource
- heat production from solar energy conversion as applied to large-scale, industrial projects
- power production from solar energy conversion, including conversion via photovoltaics and solar thermal power cycles
- theories and practices of distributed energy production and management in the context of regional and integrated energy grid structures
- theories and design practices of solar electric systems in the context of utility and commercial scale applications
Course List - Graduate Certificate in Solar Energy
You can earn the Graduate Certificate in Solar Energy by successfully completing four online courses.
If you are subsequently granted admission to the Master of Professional Studies in Renewable Energy and Sustainability Systems (iMPS-RESS) degree program, you may apply these 12 credits toward the Solar Energy master's degree option within the iMPS-RESS. Please note that a grade of B- or higher must be received in each certificate course for the credits to count toward the iMPS-RESS degree option.
|Solar Resource Assessment and Economics||EME 810||Methods, economic criteria, and meteorological background for assessing the solar resource with respect to solar energy conversion technologies.||3 credits|
|Solar Project Development and Finance||A E 878||Economic analysis of solar energy projects, including project development process, energy policies, finance methods, and economic analysis tools.||3 credits|
|Solar Thermal Energy for Utilities and Industry||EME 811||Applications of solar thermal energy (STE) including district heating/cooling (buildings), industrial process heating, fuel synthesis, desalination, and materials processing.||3 credits|
|Utility Solar Power and Concentration||EME 812||Technical and theoretical background for utility scale solar energy conversion technologies to generate electric power.||3 credits|
|Distributed Energy Planning and Management||A E 862||Theories and practices of distributed energy production and management in the context of regional and integrated energy grid structures.||3 credits|
|Commercial Solar Electric Systems||A E 868||Theories and practices of solar electric systems including component selection, performance simulation, grid interconnection, codes, and design documentation.||3 credits|
See course start and end periods and semesters offered on the Penn State World Campus student resources website.