Thursday, August 21, 2008

Masdar starts work on German PV factory

Original Article

August 21, 2008

The $230 million plant marks the first phase of Masdar's $2 billion investment in thin-film solar.

Abu Dhabi's Masdar initiative announced today that it broke ground on its first thin-film photovoltaic production plant in Ichtershausen, Germany.

Masdar, the umbrella group for the Abu Dhabi government's renewable projects, said in May that it was entering the business of making and selling thin-film PV solar products (see Masdar getting into thin film solar business).

The $230 million German plant is the first phase of the group's $2 billion investment in thin-film manufacturing.

"Abu Dhabi's geography and our vision to become a world leader in renewable energy, makes thin-film PV a natural area of focus for Masdar," said Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar.

"Germany, with its technology, highly-skilled workforce, attractive investment climate, and direct access to the European market, make it an ideal partner for Masdar."

The German factory is scheduled to open in the third quarter of next year, with a targeted annual production capacity of 70 megawatts. Masdar said the new plant will produce the world's largest PV modules at 5.7 square meters apiece.

The group's second, 140 megawatt facility, to be built in Abu Dhabi, is expected to begin production by the third quarter of 2010. Masdar said output from both plants has already been committed to major PV system installers in Europe, and for Masdar's own energy generation needs.

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