Day: January 3, 2017

Joshua Pearce on Solar and Sustainable Energy

The Next Chapter

Joshua Pearce (MSE/ECE) was interviewed for Are Sustainable Energy Jobs Sustainable in Epoch Times (circulation 1.3million).

Pearce was also interviewed on plug and play solar for the Radio Alexandria’s program The Next Chapter audio show.

Pearce is quoted in What’s the Difference Between Solar Panels? in Machine Design.

What’s the Difference Between Solar Panels?

Solar panels or photovoltaics (PVs) are not new in terms of the technology. However, manufacturing processes, cost reduction, and new research has some engineers thinking that photovoltaics will rival traditional power sources, such as coal. How important is Big Solar going to be? And what are the differences between the different types of photovoltaics?

“Solar workers have outnumbered coal workers in the U.S. for some time, but now their ranks have swollen to surpass even the oil and gas industry,” notes Joshua Pearce, Associate Professor of Material Science and Engineering at Michigan Technology . “It is not uncommon to have solar power be the less expensive option—lower-level cost of electricity—for both homeowners and businesses. This is driving a positive feedback loop, where additional growth is expected. The cumulative global market for solar PV is expected to triple by 2020 to almost 700 gigawatts (GW), with annual demand eclipsing 100 GW in 2019.”

Read more at Machine Design, by Jeff Kerns.

In Print

Joshua Pearce (MSE/ECE) co-authored a paper, “Feeding Everyone if the Sun is Obscured and Industry is Disabled,” published in the International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction.

In the News

Joshua Pearce (MSE/ECE) is quoted in Trump’s Deregulatory Ambitions Could Realize $70B More for US Solar in Solar Reviews.

Countries like the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Switzerland already encourage plug-and-play solar. Even the Czech Republic permits it! —Joshua Pearce

Best of

Joshua Pearce’s (MSE/ECE) writing on ROI for open source hardware was listed as one of the Best of Business articles for 2016.

The use of free and open source hardware (FOSH) has revolutionized the nonprofit world’s ability to bring assistance directly and more affordably to people needing aid. Overall, individuals and nonprofits are using custom-printed objects to innovate to solve less profitable problems, addressing more on the “long tail” of their issues list, if you will. Joshua Pearce looks at how to calculate the ROI for free and open source hardware, a mission-critical process that you need to do to turn your small project into a big one that makes a big difference.

6 steps to calculate ROI for an open hardware project

Laptop Stand
Laptop Stand

Free and open source software advocates have courageously blazed a trail that is now being followed by those interested in open source for physical objects. It’s called free and open source hardware (FOSH), and we’re seeing an exponential rise in the number of free designs for hardware released under opensource licenses, Creative Commons licenses,or placed in the public domain.

Read more at, by Joshua Pearce.


A paper co-authored by Joshua Pearce (MSE/ECE), Caryn Heldt (ChE) and ME undergraduate Nick Anzalone is being honored as one of the 2017 SLAS Technology Ten.

Read the editorial by Edward Kai-Hua Chow (SLAS Technology editor-in-chief).

Open-Source Wax RepRap 3-D Printer for Rapid Prototyping Paper-Based Microfluidics

By J. M. Pearce, N. C. Anzalone, and C. L. Heldt

The open-source release of self-replicating rapid prototypers (RepRaps) has created a rich opportunity for low-cost distributed digital fabrication of complex 3D objects such as scientific equipment…