First Solar Consolidates Manufacturing, Increases Conversion Efficiency
Vietnam Factory Commissioning Postponed;
Conversion Efficiency Reaches 12.4 percent for Best Manufacturing Lines
in Q3 2011;
Production Throughput Expected to Reach 70
MW/Line Annually by Year-End 2012
TEMPE, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) today announced it has consolidated its
manufacturing capacity plan and accelerated progress toward its module
conversion efficiency and production throughput targets. The company
will postpone commissioning of its Vietnam factory until global supply
and demand dynamics support the additional capacity. First Solar will
continue developing its factory in Mesa, Ariz., in order to supply PV
modules for the company's 2.7 GW North American project pipeline, which
includes the Agua Caliente, Desert Sunlight, Antelope Valley Solar Ranch
and Topaz projects.
In the third quarter, First Solar also began to implement technologies
and processes derived from its research and development (R&D) program
that produced a world-record 17.3 percent efficient cadmium telluride
solar cell in July, resulting in average module conversion efficiency of
12.4 percent from its best-performing production lines during the
quarter. Average conversion efficiency for all production lines was 11.8
percent in the third quarter, up from 11.7 percent in the second quarter.
First Solar also expects that continuous improvement programs in its
production process, coupled with the efficiency gains, will increase its
average manufacturing throughput to 70 MW annually per production line
by the end of 2012, up from 63.5 MW per line in the third quarter of
"Our achievements in R&D continue to showcase the long-term conversion
efficiency potential and scalability of our advanced thin-film
technology," said Mike Ahearn, Chairman and interim CEO of First Solar.
"This consolidation will help us to balance our production with market
demand, while still providing local capacity to supply our U.S. project
pipeline and the broader American market."
About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar manufactures solar modules with an advanced semiconductor
technology, and is a premier provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV)
system solutions. The company is delivering an economically viable
alternative to fossil-fuel generation today. From raw material sourcing
through end-of-life collection and recycling, First Solar is focused on
creating value-driven renewable energy solutions that protect and
enhance the environment. For more information about First Solar, please
For First Solar Investors
This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant
to the safe harbor provisions of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange
Act of 1934. The forward-looking statements in this release do not
constitute guarantees of future performance. Those statements involve a
number of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially,
including risks associated with the company's business involving the
company's products, their development and distribution, economic and
competitive factors, and the company's key strategic relationships and
other risks detailed in the company's filings with the Securities and
Exchange Commission. First Solar assumes no obligation to update any
forward-looking information contained in this press release or with
respect to the announcements described herein.
First Solar, Inc.
Source: First Solar, Inc.
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