[RenewableEnergyAccess.com] Nextek Power Systems won approval from the California Energy Commission for its NPS-1000, a solar photovoltaic (PV) array converter that connects directly to a building’s lighting system. The company’s direct-coupling technology offers a high efficiency lighting system with built-in backup lighting capabilities. Instead of hooking up an inverter to a PV array, Nextek has designed a converter that delivers DC straight to the ballasts of DC fluorescent lights. This helps to avoid the net losses associated with using an inverter, which switch power generated by a PV system from DC to AC. Because of the direct connection to lighting systems the NPS-1000 will also keep the light on during power outages, provided that the sun is still shining outside. Nextek has installed the system in stores such as Target and Whole Foods Markets.