A joint venture called T-SEP has been formed on a 50-50 basis by Global EcoPower and T-Solar to develop solar projects in France, equalling 120MW over the next three years. T-Solar began production of its Applied Materials supplied a-Si thin film ‘SunFab’ line nearly a year ago and has an annual capacity of 45MW or 700,000 m2 of modules per year. The move is in response to what the companies claimed were attractive feed-in-tariffs in the country, which were released on January 12. The power plants to be planned and built will be insured by the German Allianz company. The T-Solar Group operates 28 photovoltaic parks in Spain.
These could be some of the first major projects planned by a SunFab line user, which would potentially see the line reach sustainable full capacity and deliver on the low cost-per-watt goals the technology is expected to deliver.
Applied Materials had previously claimed that the large area (5.7 m2) modules offered the lowest installed cost opportunity for utility-scale projects.
Global EcoPower is developing 36 projects representing a potential installed capacity of 270MW. Most of these projects are in the south of France. The company has a strategy of keeping ownership of half of the projects while selling the other half.
Last year, First Solar announced a joint venture (100MW) CdTe module manufacturing partnership with EDF Energies Nouvelles. The modules would be exclusively used for EDF projects in France and Europe in general.