Posted: April 25, 2010

Polysilicon Facilities Start Up at Wacker's Burghausen Site

(Nanowerk News) Additional polycrystalline-silicon production facilities officially came on stream at Wacker Chemie AG’s Burghausen site last week. All “Expansion Stage 8” deposition reactors are already up and running. The plant’s full nominal capacity of 10,000 metric tons a year will be reached before the end of Q2 2010. WACKER is thus half a year ahead of its original, very ambitious schedule. Overall, WACKER is investing around €500 million in this expansion stage, thereby creating some 200 new jobs. Expanding output enables WACKER to meet rising global demand for hyperpure polycrystalline silicon. The new facilities can manufacture material for both the solar sector and the semiconductor market.
During the opening ceremony, CEO Rudolf Staudigl underlined the important role that the polysilicon business plays for WACKER. He explained that polysilicon has clearly become a mainstay of the entire Group over the recent years.
“WACKER POLYSILICON maintains its position as a key driving force for our profitable growth,” emphasized Staudigl.
Expansion Stage 8 has increased WACKER’s annual polysilicon production capacity to over 25,000 tons. Thanks to this production capacity expansion, the Munich-based Chemical Group has solidified its position as the world’s second-largest manufacturer of hyperpure polycrystalline silicon. In addition, a further plant with a 10,000-ton annual polysilicon capacity is currently being built at WACKER’s Nünchritz site. In total, WACKER is investing some €2 billion in its capacity expansion program, which began back in 2000.
The current Expansion Stage 8 is fully linked with the Burghausen site’s integrated silicon production system. In this highly integrated material loop, by-products are recycled as feedstock for use elsewhere in the supply chain. This cuts costs, while conserving resources and strengthening the site’s competitiveness. In total, polysilicon expansion will create some 650 new jobs at the Burghausen plant by late 2010.
In his speech, Dr. Staudigl thanked everyone involved in the project – both in-house staff and partner firms – for their tremendous efforts. This, he said, was one of the main reasons WACKER can supply its customers with Expansion Stage 8 polysilicon several months earlier than planned. “Polysilicon made by WACKER is so successful thanks to our cost and quality leadership, which gives us a key competitive edge on international markets,” he stressed.
Source: Wacker Chemie (press release)
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