GE says that a full-size cadmium telluride (CdTe) solar panel developed by the company has been independently certified by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory as 12.8% efficient (aperture area efficiency), a CdTe efficiency record.
GE intends to manufacture the solar panels at a 400 MW U.S. factory that, according to the company, will be larger than any existing module factory in the country. These efforts will be complemented by the recently announced acquisition of power-conversion company Converteam.
In addition, GE has completed its acquisition of PrimeStar Solar Inc., a thin-film solar technology company in which GE has held a majority equity stake since 2008. The record-setting module was produced on the PrimeStar 30 MW manufacturing line in Arvada, Colo.
GE has also announced more than 100 MW of new commercial agreements for solar thin-film products, including panels, inverters and total solar power plants. The largest agreement is with NextEra Energy for 60 MW of modules. GE also has signed a 20 MW solar agreement with Chicago-based Invenergy for the supply of modules and GE Brilliance inverters.