First Solar to Open Second U.S. Plant

March 17, 2011
New solar module facility will be located in Mesa, Ariz.

First Solar Inc. said March 17 Mesa, Ariz., will become the site of its second U.S. solar module plant.

The company expects to invest $300 million in the plant and employ approximately 600 people when construction is completed.

The plant will utilize a continuous manufacturing process that converts sheets of glass into a complete solar module in less than 2.5 hours, the company said.

Construction will begin in the second quarter of 2011 and is expected to last a year.

The new facility will include four manufacturing lines with a capacity to produce more than 250 megawatts of advanced thin-film photovoltaic modules per year. The facility will be located on a former 135-acre General Motors Corp. vehicle testing facility and is designed to accommodate future expansion.

The new plant increases First Solar's total U.S. production capacity to more than 500 megawatts per year. The company's other U.S. manufacturing facility is located in Perrysburg, Ohio, near Toledo.

The plant will be located approximately 30 minutes from First Solar's corporate headquarters in Tempe, Ariz.

First Solar President Bruce Sohn attributed state and federal policies as key contributors to the company's ability to build the facility.

"Programs such as Department of Energy loan guarantees and the solar investment tax credit are crucial to helping the renewable energy industry quickly reach the scale needed to compete with fossil fuels," Sohn said in a statement. "Over the long-term, programs like these facilitate the market growth and investment that will support the future expansion of this factory."

Arizona Republican Senator John McCain praised the move as an "important step toward greater energy security" in the United States.

See Also:

First Solar to Build New U.S. Plant

On the Rise: First Solar Ramps Up for Large-Scale Projects

First Solar Plans for Bright Future

Popular Sponsored Recommendations

Four Keys To Operational Excellence

Sept. 20, 2023
As manufacturers face supply chain disruption and shrinking margins, increasing operations performance is critical. Our smart manufacturing guidebook can help you achieve the ...

Modern Edge Computing Accelerates Smart Manufacturing Initiatives for Discrete Manufacturers

Oct. 22, 2023
Discover how Edge Computing platforms are a requisite for discrete manufacturers to solve production challenges, accelerate digitalization, and establish a reliable infrastructure...

Gain a competitive edge with real-world lessons on private 5G networks

Nov. 16, 2023
The use of private networks in manufacturing applications is rapidly growing. In this paper, we present valuable insights and lessons learned from the field with the goal of enhancing...

Shifting Your Business from Products to Service-Based Business Models: Generating Predictable Revenues

Oct. 27, 2023
Executive summary on a recent IndustryWeek-hosted webinar sponsored by SAP

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of IndustryWeek, create an account today!