Here is a little-known historic event: the first-ever grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) system in the U.S. was powered up in 1979 on the University of Texas campus in Arlington. I was a young engineer at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory then, and was sent to document that system's birth. As I recall, the initial operation of that inaugural PV system garnered little attention. In retrospect this was truly a momentous occasion, offering a faint glimpse of a very bright future.