Silicon ingot manufacturer Norwegian Crystals is planning a five-fold increase in output after securing an investment from EIT InnoEnergy.
With permits in place to manufacture ingots in the north of Norway, Norwegian Crystals already has offtake and supply agreements arranged.
The investment comes weeks after the company secured a silicon wafer supply agreement with heterojunction cell and module manufacturer Meyer Burger.
Norwegian Crystals’ ingots have a carbon footprint that is a third of those manufactured in Asia, due to proximity to renewable energy sources for production and reduced emissions related to logistics, according to EIT InnoEnergy.
Blake Barthelmess, chief operations officer at Norwegian Crystals, told PV Tech earlier this year that the energy mix where the company’s production plant is located in northern Norway is 99% hydropower and 1% wind, while the company’s reduced-carbon footprint is also boosted by its procurement strategy of sourcing polysilicon from the US and Germany.
Gøran Bye, CEO of Norwegian Crystals, said being able to partner with EIT InnoEnergy to accelerate its production is a significant step forward for the company.
“The connections and support it can provide will ensure we bring more silicon ingot production capacity to Europe so we can fulfil our ambitions of growing at pace over the next few years to support the industry as it scales up,” he added.
Supported by the EU’s Institute of Innovation and Technology, EIT InnoEnergy is a climate and renewable energy tech investor and is the driving force behind the European Solar Initiative, launched last year to scale up Europe’s PV manufacturing industry.
EIT InnoEnergy has more than 40 investments in the European PV value chain, according to its CEO Diego Pavia, who said the investor will use its “deep domain expertise to support the scaling of Norwegian Crystals”.