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First Solar said it plans to invest $ 648 million in India’s new fully vertically integrated photovoltaic (PV) thin-film solar module manufacturing facility.
The facility will be built in Tamil Nadu and will be operational in the second half of 2023, subject to the approval of the Indian Government’s incentives to satisfy First Solar. The planned facility has projected capacity of 3.3 GW (DC).
With First Solar’s expansion in the United States and India and optimization of its existing fleet, the company anticipates that its nameplate manufacturing capacity will double to 16 GW (DC) in 2024.
The facility will be designed using the advanced manufacturing template established for First Solar’s recently-announced factory in Ohio. Combining highly skilled workers with Industry 4.0 architecture, machine-to-machine communication, artificial intelligence, and Internet of Things connectivity, it will feature high degrees of automation, precision, and continuous improvement.
“India is an attractive market for First Solar, It is an inherently sustainable market, underpinned by a growing economy and appetite for energy, with a well-defined goal that will need over 25 GW of solar to be deployed every year for the next nine years,” said Mark Widmar, chief executive officer, First Solar.
“Crucially, it has combined its clean energy targets with effective trade and industrial policy designed to enable self-sufficient domestic manufacturing and true energy security. We also have many longstanding customers in the country that will be pleased to have access to an advanced PV module, which is made in India, for India.” he added.
First Solar produces its thin film PV modules using a fully integrated, continuous process under one roof and does not rely on Chinese c-Si supply chains.
The company’s eco-efficient module technology, which uses its proprietary Cadmium Telluride (CadTel) semiconductor, has the lowest carbon and water footprints of any PV module available today.
First Solar Inc., a partner of NREL recently celebrated 30 years on Cadmium Telluride Solar Cell Research.