Getting Technical: Renewable Energy Inroads

February 11, 2009 at 5:39 pm Leave a comment

dsc_1274Penned by Raj

Every day, engineers come to us wondering how they can translate their traditional backgrounds into the renewable energy field. Through the next few weeks, I’ll work on providing some tips for those people on how to best present yourself and make your skills relevant as you transition into the green space.

While I’ll go much further in depth in the following weeks, I’ll start out at square one for engineers looking to move into solar technology companies.

For anyone who’s done research in the solar area, you’ll know that there are different kinds of solar technologies. Companies are working on solar PV, solar thermal, or concentrated PV. Companies provide services within these fields, such as building inverters, installation design, and solar as a service.

The first battle is to understand how these different technologies work. Don’t be embarrassed to check out Wikipedia’s article on solar energy or poke around the American Solar Energy Society‘s site to get oriented. (If you have other informative general articles on solar energy, feel free to share them here so other jobseekers can explore them).

Second, you should start to understand who’s out there. We always come back to this map of 100 Cleantech Start-ups that we found on Earth2tech, which has links to a number of different solar companies. Another good place to find information is through the exhibitor lists for some of the big solar conferences that happen every year, such as Intersolar North America.

Next week, I’ll start talking about presenting your transferable skills to companies as you go through your job search.

About me: I am a part-time lecturer at College Eight on Environment and Society at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Prior to joining Bright Green Talent, I worked in several recruitment envrionments, including executive search, technical and engineering roles at Google Inc and global poverty reduction, global health and climate change positions for I am interested in the evolving DNA of scientific, engineering and technology talent in the sustainability, energy efficiency and renewable energy technology sectors and the types of skill sets and values that underpin engineering talent.


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