SCHOTT Solar Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary of SCHOTT AG, says it will construct a new solar energy technology production facility in the Mesa del Sol region of Albuquerque, N.M.
Initially, the production site will manufacture receivers for concentrated solar thermal power plants and 64 MW of photovoltaic modules. SCHOTT will construct a 200,000 square-foot facility, which is expected to begin production in 2009.
Anticipating the need to increase production of its solar power technologies as the market for renewable energy in the U.S. grows, the new site is designed to support expansion of both its photovoltaic module and solar receiver lines. Long-term plans call for the building to expand to 800,000 square feet with 1,500 employees, representing a total investment of $500 million.
‘According to both industry analysts and our projections, the market for solar energy will double over the next five years,’ says Dr. Udo Ungeheuer, chairman of SCHOTT's board of management. ‘With this new plant, SCHOTT Solar, the State of New Mexico, the City of Albuquerque and Bernalillo County are taking a lead in answering the growing demand for renewable energy in the United States.’
The new site will complement SCHOTT's existing Billerica, Mass., facility, which has a capacity of 15 MW and produces the SCHOTT ASE-300 Watt PV module, one of the largest standard-sized modules available on the market today.
In 2007, SCHOTT's total PV production capacity worldwide was 130 MW. For 2010, SCHOTT plans on a global yearly production capacity of crystalline solar cells and modules of about 450 MW each and additional capacity of 100 MW in ASI thin-film technology.