Sanyo chooses Oregon site for new solar PV ingot, wafer factory

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Sanyo North America has received approval from the Salem, OR, city council to build a new solar silicon ingot and wafer factory in the community’s Renewable Energy and Technology Park. The company says it plans to begin operations at the plant in October 2009 and be at full operation by April 2010, with a production capacity of approximately 70 MW and an employee headcount of 200.

The Salem facility will be constructed and organized by a new entity, Sanyo Solar of Oregon. Once the $80 million, 861,000-square-foot plant is completed, it will bring the parent company’s total U.S. photovoltaic ingot and wafer production capacity–when combined with the output of its existing fab in Carson, CA–to approximately 100 MW.

Sanyo has set a goal for an annual global production capacity of at least 600 MW by fiscal 2010. Sanyo plans to expand its Shimane, Japan, solar-cell factory from 50 to 130 MW by the fiscal year-end of 2008. The company says it will also add 40 MW of module capacity at its new Shiga, Japan, assembly facility this year and is considering expansion plans for its Hungarian and Mexican module plants.

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Sanyo expects to have 340 MW of both cell and module production capacity online at its various manufacturing sites by the end of fiscal 2008.

— Tom Cheyney

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