Semprius, Inc., a provider of high concentration photovoltaic (HCPV) solar modules, announced last week that it will open its first production facility in North Carolina.

The new facility, located in Henderson, N.C., uses a proprietary manufacturing process to produce highly efficient solar modules. At 33.9% conversion efficiency, Semprius’ modules are the first to convert more than one-third of the sun’s energy into electricity, according to the company.

Developed with the support of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Semprius’ proprietary micro-transfer printing process enables the use of the world’s smallest solar cell -– approximately the size of a pencil point -– to manufacture modules with unmatched performance and cost advantages. 

Semprius was named to MIT Technology Review’s 2012 TR10, an annual list of the world’s 10 most important emerging technologies.

“The highly anticipated opening of this new facility has significant implications for the future of renewable energy,” said Semprius CEO Joe Carr. “With production ramped up, we will be able to effectively service our customers, including companies like Siemens and Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.”

Semprius plans to hire more than 250 employees over the next several years.

Financing came from almost $40 million in funding from equity investors including ARCH Venture Partners, Illinois Ventures, Intersouth Partners, In-Q-Tel, Morgan Creek Capital Management and Siemens Venture Capital as well as $8 million from county and state incentives.

“The opening of Semprius’ solar manufacturing plant in Henderson further strengthens North Carolina’s leadership in clean technology and sustainability,” said Governor Perdue.