French solar manufacturer Photowatt will shut down production for three weeks because of decreased demand for its photovoltaic modules and systems, according to parent company ATS Automation Tooling Systems. The temporary shutdown begins next week and will affect about 450 production employees at Photowatt’s facility in Bourgoin-Jallieu, outside of Lyon, France.
Photowatt said that it will implement process improvements in its manufacturing lines during the shutdown period. The integrated facility, which includes multicrystalline-silicon solar wafering, cell, and module fabrication and assembly operations, is expected to reach 75-MW capacity by year’s end, according to the recent global PV cell production and capacity data published in Photon International.
ATS laid off 160 temporary employees at Photowatt in March 2009, as part of corporate restructuring moves.