Sharp Corp. Investing in Solar Cell Plant

New plant will use large-size glass substrates which will improve production efficiency.

Sharp Corp. said March 27 that it was investing 72 billion yen (US$727 million) in a new solar cell plant to meet fast growing demand for environmentally friendly power generation systems.

Sharp first announced last year a plan to construct the world's largest solar cell plant in the western city of Sakai but did not disclose its investment at the time.

The plant, which will start operating in March 2010, is a new thin-film silicon solar cell manufacturing facility, which will use large-size glass substrates and will "dramatically improve production efficiency and be able to respond more efficiently to booming demand," the company said. Thin-film solar cells are said to use only about one hundredth of the silicon raw material used in conventional crystalline solar cells.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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