SANYO Electric Co. and Nippon Oil Corporation are working on a deal
that could see the formation of a thin-film solar cell manufacturing
joint venture between the two companies by April
2009. SANYO said that a partner for its thin-film solar plans would
enable a faster development of its plans due to the possibility of
sharing costs and raising of necessary funds. Nippon Oil is
interested in diversifying its business further into renewable energy
and teaming with an experienced player in the market.
SANYO also reiterated its commitment to develop and expand its existing crystalline solar cell business in tandem with thin film. SANYO currently operates a 5MW thin-film pilot line; however, it lags behind other key players in Japan that are expanding thin-film production, according to data from RTS, the Japan-based market research firm.
The companies aim to commercialize highly efficient, low-cost thin-film solar cells by April 2010, after further consultations take place between the two companies.