Elkem Solar has decided to restart parts of a former REC wafer factory in Porsgrunn, Norway, to produce ingots for solar panels.
In May 2015, Norway-based silicon producer Elkem Group completed its acquisition of solar panel manufacturer REC Group, also headquartered in Norway. Shortly after, Elkem announced the intention to take over the old REC factory in Porsgrunn.
“We have spent the last months verifying the concept and have now decided to take over the plant. We want to continue developing new renewable energy technology and expect to restart production during [the second half of] 2016,” explains CEO of Elkem Solar Inge Grubben-Strømnes.
The ingots will be produced using Elkem Solar Silicon (ESS) from Elkem Solar in Kristiansand, Norway. The blocks will be shipped to REC Solar in Singapore, and the development is expected to create around 70 new jobs.
The two factories in Porsgrunn and Kristiansand will become part of the world’s most cost- and energy efficient value chain from quartz to solar panels,” says Grubben-Strømnes. “This move enhances the integration between Elkem Solar and REC Solar and shows our ambition to grow.”