The SolarWorld Group, a recognized global player in photovoltaics has awarded the SolarWorld Einstein Award to Professor Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace prize and founder of the Grameen Bank.

The economics professor, originally from Bangladesh, sees rewarded his bold initiative of micro-credits for the poor, through which millions of people around the world have come out of poverty.

“Grameen has given me an unshakable faith in human creativity, and the absolute certainty that humans are not born to suffer hunger and poverty,” Yunus said at the official ceremony of the prize. Through this initiative, micro-credits have enabled the installation of over 400 000 small photovoltaic systems, guaranteeing the supply of electricity to rural areas of Bangladesh, well above the national network.

“One of the keys to fight against poverty is the decentralization of energy available. With the help of micro-credit, families can purchase small PV systems that give them an income. Muhammad Yunus has shown how to give a future to people with an idea and remarkable courage “said Dr. Frank Asbeck, CEO of SolarWorld. Since 2005, the Group has awarded its prestigious solar industry personalities who have contributed most to the photovoltaic technology.

The SolarWorld Junior Einstein Award to a student researcher at Fraunhofer

Since 2006, SolarWorld also reward young researchers in the field of photovoltaics, with SolarWorld Junior Einstein Award. In 2010, the winner is the young Dr. Christian Reimann of the Fraunhofer Institute, awarded for its integrated systems and component technologies (iiSBE) in Erlangen (Germany). The thesis has focused on the mineralogy of the formation of silicon crystals and the prevention of impurities in molten silicon, a technique that can improve the efficiency of solar panels and thus reduce the cost of solar energy. The process developed by Reimann has just been patented.

A SolarWorld Einstein Award of Honor for Walt Ratterman

For his commitment to solar energy industry, the Group has awarded the SolarWorld Einstein Award posthumously to Walt Ratterman, thus distinguishing a very special way that solar energy pioneer who tragically died in the earthquake that hit Haiti in January.

Co-founder of the US SunEnergy Power, he was engaged in a careful work in the poorest countries in the world. Walt Ratterman was one of the Solar2World program partners led by SolarWorld AG and was responsible in particular for solar electrification of Haitian hospitals.

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