Episode 4 Energy System - NREL

This week we focus on the energy system of the home.

Even though humans have relied on the power of the sun as a source of heat and light for thousands of years, it is only recently that solar energy has become a regular topic of conversation when discussing our dependence on fossil fuel burning power. The idea of placing solar panels on the roof once seemed out of reach for most homeowners but advancements in this technology are making it more efficient, more affordable and an increasingly attractive option for offsetting energy costs and selling homegrown power back to the grid. From rooftop panels, to sunlight absorbing house paint to flexible panels that can be worn on clothing and backpacks, tremendous resources are being spent to develop efficient means of harnessing the sun’s rays. Leaving us to wonder: Can solar power be the answer to our energy needs?

Here to provide more insight about the future of solar energy is Cecile Warner.

Cecile Warner is a Project Manager at the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL). She is recognized for her outstanding and sustained work towards the advancement of solar photovoltaic technology. She received the Women in Solar Energy Award from the American Solar Energy Society for her contributions, particularly her public outreach efforts.

Cecile has led the Laboratory in developing and managing the highly acclaimed U.S. Solar Decathlon. This a competition where teams of college and university students compete to design the most attractive, effective, and efficient solar powered house. She was also project director of Sunrayce 93, a university competition of solar cars. She holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering.

For more information about the National Renewable Energy Lab, the U.S. Solar Decathlon and the subject of solar photovoltaic technology, check out the following links:


The two songs used in today's program are both about the sun. These songs were created by independent artists willing to share their music online for free. The artists can be found on garageband.com a website promoting new and emerging independent musicians. Here are links to the artists:

Bye, Bye Sunshine by Sleepy Green

Sun by Mike Masse

Join us next week for another episode of World House Radio: Stories of Home.