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Floridas Premier Energy Research Center
1679 Clearlake Road, Cocoa, Florida, United States

Memberships : NA
Industry : Renewable Energy
Basic Member
Since Jan, 2020
About Company

FSEC Energy Research Center, also known as the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC), is the state’s premier energy research center. Created by the Florida Legislature in 1975 to test and certify solar systems, FSEC is administered by the University of Central Florida. As a result of FSEC’s extensive research capabilities increasing throughout the years, Florida Solar Energy Center slowly outgrew its solar name. The Center is rebranding its research as the FSEC Energy Research Center—at the University of Central Florida—to more accurately reflect its research, capabilities, and university affiliation.


Although energy research programs and projects have changed throughout the years, FSEC’s mission remains the same:

Research Areas

FSEC has more than 40 years of experience in renewable energy systems and building science. The Center’s 70-member staff includes professionals with expertise in engineering, energy research, building science, energy and policy analysis, as well as education and training.  Research at the FSEC Energy Research Center is based on field monitoring, computer simulations, and controlled experiments in highly-instrumented laboratories. As a result of FSEC’s extensive research capabilities, its programs are nationally and internationally recognized, and include:

  • High performance buildings
  • Solar technologies
  • Hydrogen and fuel cells
  • Electric vehicles
  • Energy systems integration
  • K-12 Education and Continuing Education

Funding & Partners

The Center performs contracted research and training in partnership with government, industry, nonprofit organizations, private sponsors, and national laboratories. Funding totals $6 to $12 million annually, in addition to receiving $3 million in operating funds.

Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Capabilities

The hydrogen and fuel cell laboratories at the FSEC Energy Research Center at the University of Central Florida are one of the nation’s highest caliber research labs of its kind. The equipment is used to conduct hydrogen research on production, storage, utilization and sensors, and fuel cell research on membranes, fabrication, mass transport, surface properties and electrochemical diagnostics.

Fuel Cell Lab

The Fuel Cell Lab is devoted to assembly and characterization of electrochemical devices such as fuel cells and flow batteries. In this lab, nearly every component of a fuel cell can be fabricated, from the membrane, to the catalyst ink, to the final membrane electrode assembly (MEA). Once an MEA has been assembled, it can be tested for performance or durability using single-cell test stands, or a one-of-a-kind multi-station durability test station. During these tests, the fuel cell performance or durability is evaluated as a function of temperature, gas concentrations and relative humidity. The focus at this lab is to develop techniques that reduce membrane degradation in a fuel cell application.  In addition to fuel cell testing in this lab, flow battery research is conducted to improve the high current performance of the all-vanadium flow battery. The membranes that were developed for fuel cell applications may also find use in the all-vanadium flow battery system. This research positions the Energy Research Center at UCF to develop the next generation of energy storage systems for grid-scale applications.


A researcher checks readings during three solar thermal tests outdoors photo  Solar thermal research is one of FSEC’s flagship programs, and includes both solar water heating and solar cooking. Although there are no current research projects on solar thermal, FSEC has a long history of testing and research on this topic that ranges from commercial systems to solar weatherization programs to low-cost solar ovens for third-world countries.

Photovoltaic Mechanical Durability Testing

electron microscope image for degradation analysisMechanical durability is one of the most critical aspects of module reliability as modules commonly experience external mechanical loads from snow and wind once in the field. These mechanical loads can cause cells within the module to fracture, causing electrical discontinuities that reduce the module performance. With the use of a novel mechanical load tester for photovoltaic modules, researchers are currently exploring how different module designs influence mechanical durability. Each component of the module—including the solar cells, interconnects, module packaging and frame design—all have an unique impact on the overall susceptibility to cell cracking.

Floating Solar Photovoltaic Systems

Floating photovoltaic system (10 panels x 10 panels) anchored in calm body of water, accessed by personal watercraft.Floating photovoltaic (FPV) systems, also known as floating solar, are electricity-generating solar panels affixed atop buoyant platforms, sited directly on bodies of water. This research project will monitor the performance, durability, water-quality impacts and biodiversity interactions of four existing U.S. floating solar sites across diverse climatic regions.


UCF researchers have extensive experience in in collecting, verifying, archiving, managing, analyzing, and reporting field monitoring data. This includes knowledge of experiment design, appropriate low-cost monitoring equipment, as well as knowledge and experience on proper instrumentation protocols to ensure optimum data quality.  Researchers conduct large-scale energy experiments using both custom-built and commercially available data acquisition systems, and they have developed a comprehensive set of software and systems capabilities to conduct fully-automated field monitoring projects.

Company NameFloridas Premier Energy Research Center
Business CategoryRenewable Energy
Address1679 Clearlake Road
United States
ZIP: 32922
Year EstablishedNA
Hours of OperationNA
Company Services
  • Solar-powered Hydrogen Production
  • Hydrogen Storage And Purification
  • Photovoltaic Capabilities
  • Floating Solar Photovoltaic Systems
  • Photovoltaic Systems Monitoring
  • Photovoltaic Degradation Analysis
  • Photovoltaic Mechanical Durability Testing
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