Tennessee Solar Institute - Solar Installation Grant Program

September 28, 2010


*This record is for information purposes only.* TSI will no longer accept applications for Solar Installation Grants. The program received more applications than ARRA allocations could support. TSI will re-open the program should additional funds become available. The Tennessee Solar Institute is a collaboration between the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, established in 2009. Using funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), the Solar Institute began offering grants* for solar installations in June 2010. Only business entities (including commercial, industrial and agricultural businesses) and non-profit organizations (with 501c3 designation) are eligible to apply. Systems owned by third parties are eligible for funding. Pre-approval is required for all projects. All projects must be built by December 31, 2011, and must follow ARRA reporting requirements in order to receiving funding. Awards totaling half of the $9 million allocated for this initiative have been announced as of August 2010. A full technical review along with the detailed application is required to receive the solar installation incentive. * These grants are available on a first-come, first-served basis as long as the project complies with the program guidelines and meets all eligibility requirements and funding is available. In a typical "grant" program, there is some sort of competition and/or ranking of qualified applicants. This program resembles a rebate program rather than a grant program.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Financial Incentive
State: Tennessee
Incentive Type: Rebate Program
Web Site: http://solar.tennessee.edu
Administrator: University of Tennessee (UT)
Start Date: 06/21/2010
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar Photovoltaics
Incentive Amount: $2.00/W (1 to 30 kW); $1.50/W (greater than 30 kW to 60 kW); $1.00/W (greater than 60 kW to 200 kW)
Maximum Incentive: $245,000
Eligible System Size: 1 kW to 200 kW (DC)
Equipment Requirements: Systems must be listed by nationally recognized testing laboratory (UL- listed), and be compliant with IEEE standards, or other NRTL standards and comply with UL 1703 standard. Inverters must be certified as meeting IEEE 1547 and UL 1741.
Installation Requirements: Must be completed by a Tennessee licensed electrician (the electrical work associated with the solar installation). Must comply with codes and standards. Systems must install a data acquisition system. For systems over 30 kW, the electrical design must stamped by a Tennessee licensed PE. Ground mounted allowed for systems less than 60 kW (DC).
Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits: Not addressed.

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.