Thomas R. Earnest, Jr., venture leader for DuPont Photovoltaic Solutions, examines a prototype of the solar panels behind him. (Credit: DuPont.)

A new announcement from DuPont gives some indication of just how rapidly the solar energy industry has grown in a relatively short period of time.

According to the company, it expects to report $1 billion in revenue from photovoltaic sales in 2010 alone – a goal that will be reached one year ahead of schedule. A substantial portion of this growth was said to come from innovations improving the efficiency of solar modules.

“Our broad portfolio of offerings spans crystalline silicon cells and modules as well as thin film modules, putting us in an ideal position to capitalize on market growth in both segments of the photovoltaics industry,” says DuPont President David Miller.

Among the DuPont solar-related products Miller cited were its Solamet metallization paste, Tedlar backsheet films and a line of encapsulant resins and films that make modules more efficient.

Miller also indicated that DuPont continues to invest in greater production capabilities for solar energy products, with customers and partners to keep on top of higher demand from around the world. He added that renewable energy generation is expected to be the fastest growing part of the energy market over the next two decades.

To read more about DuPont’s photovoltaic venture, see these related stories:

DuPont opens North American photovoltaic research facility

DuPont completes $295M expansion for PV market