Bend Oregon based developers of a patent-pending steel frame for solar modules that lowers cost, dramatically reduces carbon emissions, and improves performance and value Origami Solar has advanced to the final round of the US Department of Energy’s American-Made Solar Prize competition. One of ten Hardware Track teams named finalists, Origami was awarded a USD 100,000 prize to advance its innovation from proof-of-concept to production-ready for the final phase of the contest.Origami Solar’s patent-pending approach combining innovative engineering and design with the capabilities of precision roll-forming and utilization of domestically available recycled steel delivers performance equal to or better than aluminum frames, while lowering material costs and significantly reducing production greenhouse gas emissions. This innovative module frame is readily manufacturable and will meet or exceed all UL and IEC standards. Since being named a semi-finalist in December, Origami’s rigorous advancement and testing has confirmed several unique benefits, includingThe company’s novel design gives its frame high strength and stiffness while minimizing the amount of steel required; roll forming results in more than 10 tight folds in a two square inch cross-sectional areaThe patent-pending steel module frame performs equal to or better than traditional aluminum frames while significantly reducing production-related GHG emissionsThird-party consulting firm TESCI Solar found that, for load bearing requirements, the Origami 35mm frame has equivalent performance characteristics to a standard 40mm aluminum frame, allowing producers to provide a “higher shipping density product without sacrificing strength or performance”A robust steel ecosystem is available globally, eliminating emissions produced by shipping imported aluminum module frames, which are produced almost exclusively in ChinaUtilization of steel anti-corrosion coatings like galvanized or zinc-aluminum-magnesium enables steel components to last for 30 years or moreOrigami will present its solution one last time at the DOE’s Go! Demo Day in September 2022. Ultimately, two teams will win the grand prize, each receiving an additional USD 500,000 and a USD 75,000 support voucher to help them bring their technologies to market.