US Energy Department supports tubular solar power

From the New York Times:

The Energy Department has tentatively awarded its first alternative-energy loan guarantee, breaking a four-year logjam in the federal loan program. The $535 million guarantee will go to Solyndra Inc., which said it would use the money to expand its production of photovoltaic panels at its facilities in Fremont, Calif.

Solyndra manufactures thin-film photovoltaics plated onto cylinders (picture a fluorescent light tube) that collects direct, diffuse and reflected solar energy over a 360° angle. The cylinders are assembled into panels which are easily installed on flat roofs using simple brackets.