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Posted: July 15, 2009
SVTC, Roth & Rau to Collaborate on Full-Production 30 MW Photovoltaic Manufacturing Line
(Nanowerk News) Responding to emerging opportunities in the U.S. solar market as well as economic stimulus funding, SVTC Technologies and Roth & Rau have renewed and expanded their partnership and are establishing a 30 megawatt (MW) world-class photovoltaic (PV) development and manufacturing center located in California’s Silicon Valley in the City of San Jose. SVTC Technologies is a provider of technology development and commercialization services to global semiconductor-based clients, and Roth & Rau is a world-leading solar equipment manufacturer based in Germany.
Through the new 30 MW Silicon Valley Photovoltaic Development Center, SVTC and Roth & Rau will offer a full range of manufacturing equipment and services to companies engaged in the development and production of solar cells.
Changing conditions favor solar success
Worldwide, the solar PV market is expected to reach $34 billion by 2013. The economic stimulus bill, signed into law in February 2009, is making billions of dollars available through the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) for renewable energy investment in U.S. companies, including those engaged in solar energy development and manufacturing.
During 2008, almost $4 billion was invested in solar technologies. However, with the recent market down-turn, most solar development companies in the U.S., including both start-ups and established firms, do not have access to either the capital equipment or cost-effective, complete development solutions they need to succeed. Without such access, it is unlikely that most U.S. solar start-ups can survive more than two years, or that established companies will thrive and reach their potential.
“Our relationship with Roth & Rau, developed over a year ago, has enabled SVTC to respond rapidly to new opportunities resulting from changing market conditions and stimulus funding for solar energy development by the US government,” said Joe Bronson, CEO of SVTC Technologies. “SVTC has proven the value of its business model of providing equipment and development capabilities for the commercialization of products in the semiconductor portion of its business. We will adapt the same concept to the emerging US solar business to accelerate its ability to grow the market for solar cells. We are delighted to move forward with a strong partner of Roth & Rau's standing and expertise and we both expect to accelerate the commercialization process in solar cell development while providing significant cost abatement to the industry resulting from their ability to access a world-class manufacturing line instead of investing considerable sums in their own pilot production facilities.”
“The timing is right for a big push into the U.S. market for solar technologies, especially in California and Silicon Valley,” said Dietmar Roth, CEO of Roth & Rau AG. “By partnering with SVTC, Roth & Rau will gain access to the nation’s highest concentration of solar product development companies as well as establish a high-profile presence in Silicon Valley. We are very enthusiastic about the market for PV development and manufacturing in the U.S., which we believe is poised for rapid growth.”
SVTC and Roth & Rau have significantly expanded the scope of their original plans for the Silicon Valley Photovoltaic Development Center, increasing the capacity of the manufacturing line from 5 MW to 30 MW, to meet the greater demand from solar development companies.
The Silicon Valley Photovoltaic Development Center, which is scheduled to be operational by Q1 2010, will offer a full range of low-cost development solutions along with the 30 MW solar cell production line. The manufacturing line will consist of state-of-the-art Roth & Rau equipment and will also include tools from other world-class solar equipment suppliers.
About SVTC Technologies
SVTC Technologies speeds the development and commercialization of innovative silicon-based technologies and products, cost-effectively and in an IP-secure manner. Through facilities in San Jose, Calif., and Austin, Texas, SVTC serves customers in rapidly growing markets such as novel memory, novel transistors, logic, MEMS, biotechnology, images sensors and photovoltaics. SVTC offers a suite of leading-edge equipment and services, including full-scale 8-inch and 12-inch process capabilities, advanced CMOS equipment, analytical services, development support tools and commercialization services. SVTC is co-owned by Oak Hill Capital Management and Tallwood Venture Capital, along with management. SVTC Technologies is an equal opportunity employer.
About Roth & Rau AG
Roth & Rau AG based in Hohenstein-Ernstthal is one of the world’s leading suppliers of technologies and production equipment for the photovoltaics industry. Roth & Rau’s photovoltaic division (PV) focuses on providing antireflective coating facilities as well as fully automated manufacturing lines (turnkey production lines) for the production of crystalline silicon solar cells. Another focus is on the production of coating facilities and turnkey production lines for the production of thin film solar modules. The plasma and ion beam technology division (PIB) produces plasma sources and ion beam sources as well as process systems for plasma and ion beam enhanced thin film and surface processing methods. Customers served by this division include, in particular, companies in the semiconductor industry, R&D departments in various industries including photovoltaics as well as research institutes and universities. The third division, Other Activities, comprises maintenance and service, software products as well as other products and services.