Tata Group to establish 4GW solar cell facility in Tamil Nadu – report

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Tata Power Solar expanded its cell and module manufacturing plant in Bengaluru earlier this year. Image: Tata Power Solar.

Tata Group is planning to set up a 4GW solar cell manufacturing unit in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, according to a report from the Times of India.

The conglomerate’s solar power arm is said to be in the final stages of negotiations with the state government over constructing the facility, which would see the company invest around INR 30 billion (US$403 million).

Tata Power Solar did not respond to requests for comment by PV Tech.

The reported manufacturing expansion follows Tata Power Solar increasing production capacity of solar modules and cells at its Bengaluru facility to 1.1GW earlier this year. Mono Passivated Emitter Rear Cell (PERC) cell manufacturing capacity at the unit is now 530MW, while module assembly capacity (using half-cut mono PERC cells) is 580MW.

The southeastern state of Tamil Nadu is already home to solar manufacturing operations from Vikram Solar, which recently inaugurated a 1.3GW module production plant that includes manufacturing lines capable of accommodating modules featuring M12 (210mm) cells as well as bifacial panels.

That facility represents the first phase of Vikram’s Tamil Nadu expansion following an agreement the company signed with the state government last year.

First Solar is also planning on setting up solar manufacturing in Tamil Nadu, announcing in July a 3.3GWdc module assembly facility that is due to begin operations in the second half of 2023.

India’s government is set to provide additional support for companies establishing solar manufacturing operations through its production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme, which will see its funding increased more than five-fold to INR 240 billion, it was revealed by India’s minister of new and renewable energy, RK Singh, earlier this month.

While Tata Power Solar was one of 18 bidders that submitted applications to the PLI scheme, according to consultancy JMK Research & Analytics, it has since been revealed that Jindal India Solar Energy, Shirdi Sai Electricals and Reliance New Energy Solar were selected as the three beneficiaries of funding under the programme.

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