By: Victor A. Cardona

The Shine On Solar edition of the CLEAN ENERGY PATENT GROWTH INDEX (CEPGI), published by the Cleantech Group at Heslin Rothenberg Farley & Mesiti P.C. provides an indication of the trend of innovative activity in the Solar energy sector. In 2010 Solar patents were second only to Fuel Cell patents in the Clean Energy area. Solar Photovoltaic patents spiked in 2010 to a record level of 339 (up 232 %) with third generation solar PV patents topping the other generations of PV technology. Applied Materials led the other Solar PV patent owners in 2010 over Sunpower and leaving behind overall PV leader Canon. Fu Zhun Precision Industry and Foxconn Technology Co., Ltd. led solar thermal patent owners. Solar thermal patents were granted to 23 other separate entities with only inventor Pitaya Yangpichit even receiving two and Walmart Stores being one of the 22 with one patent.

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