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Posted: June 1, 2010
SolarWorld Opens New Solar Wafer Production in Germany
(Nanowerk News) Yesterday, SolarWorld AG inaugurated its new solar wafer production in the presence of Germany´s Federal Environment Minister Röttgen at the German location in Freiberg. As a result the group will have a total production capacity of 750 Megawatt worth of crystalline solar wafers in Germany by the end of the year. These in turn will be the blanks for the production of highly efficient crystalline solar cells. Buildings and infrastructure are already in place for the further expansion to 1,000 Megawatt. Thus, SolarWorld comes out fairly and squarely in favor of Germany as its high-tech production location.
“The constantly progressing climate change is forcing us to make our energy supply more and more carbon free. My idea is that by 2050 the renewable energies will cover our energy needs almost completely”, says Environment Minister Röttgen during the celebrations at Freiberg’s Industrial Estate East. “A new market is emerging, in Germany and worldwide. It is only through permanent innovation and a brand strategy that the German manufacturers can stand their ground in this increasingly tougher international competition. SolarWorld has adopted a very good approach here and I am positive that SolarWorld AG will continue to write its success story.”
On the whole SolarWorld will be investing 350 million Euro in this new production facility. “This makes it one of the largest investments in the photovoltaic business ever made in Germany”, explains Frank H. Asbeck, Chairman and CEO of SolarWorld AG. “At all our locations we are producing to high quality, environmental and social benchmarks setting standards worldwide. Freiberg as the very heart of our worldwide production will be further expanded and in doing so we will send out a signal against the industry trend of outsourcing production capacities to other countries.” SolarWorld is one of Germany´s Top 100 employers. In the “trendence Absolventenbarometer 2010” published by the german business magazine “Manager Magazin” SolarWorld AG is among the most popular employers in 14th place with engineers.
With the new building SolarWorld will become even more efficient in production: The entire manufacturing process is fully automated and can boast low energy and water consumption. In addition, the waste heat from crystallization is used to heat the entire building. The roughly one Megawatt strong solar power plant on the industrial roof supplies clean electricity for about 1,000 people. At its largest production site worldwide in Freiberg SolarWorld employs 1,700 people which makes it the largest industrial employer in the rural district of Central Saxony.
About SolarWorld AG
The SolarWorld AG Group is a worldwide leader in offering brand-name, high quality, crystalline solar-power technology. Its strength is its fully integrated solar production. From silicon as the raw material through wafers, cells and modules all the way to turn-key solar systems, including recycling, the group combines all stages of the solar value chain. The central business activity is selling quality modules into the installation and distribution trades and crystalline wafers to the international solar cell industry. Group headquarters are located in Bonn, Germany. Production sites are to be found in Germany, the United States and South Korea. The group´s largest production facilities operate in Freiberg, Germany and Hillsboro in the U.S. State of Oregon. Sustainability is the basis of the group strategy. Under the name Solar2World, the group supports care projects using off-grid solar-power solutions in emerging economies and developing countries, exemplifying sustainable economic development. Worldwide, SolarWorld employs more than 2,700 people. SolarWorld AG has been quoted on the stock exchange since 1999 and today is listed on, among others, the TecDAX, ÖkoDAX, Dow Jones STOXX 600 as well as in the sustainability indices DAXglobal Alternative Energy and NAI.