SPI Energy will start 1.5-GW silicon wafer manufacturing site stateside by 2023

SPI Energy, the company that acquired the former Sunergy solar panel plant in Sacramento, California and has been making Solar4America-branded solar panels from the facility since March of this year, announced it has signed a letter of intent to secure solar energy. . wafer manufacturing equipment. The company aims to supply and manufacture solar wafers in the United States by 2023, and originally planned to have 1.5 GW of annual wafer production capacity. SPI Energy aims to increase its wafer production capacity to 3 GW by 2024.

This will be the first silicon wafer facility to be established in the United States in nearly a decade. Waffles are the precursor to solar cells, which are then assembled into final solar panels. The United States does not yet have cell production within its borders.

Although SPI Energy already has a production site for its modules, it is largely estimated that it will take at least six to nine months to start wafer production from the ground up. SPI Energy’s target for late 2023 may be achievable, but polysilicon production plans in the US are not expected to restart in time to provide an ingot manufacturer that will supply SPI Energy’s wafer process. But a first step is a first step.

Founded in 2006, SPI Energy is engaged in EV, solar, and storage solutions and moved its global headquarters from China to California last year. Through its SolarJuice (residential solar supplier), SPI Solar/Orange Power (commercial and utility supplier) and EdisonFuture/Phoenix Motor EV (electric vehicle sales) divisions, SPI Energy has operations in North America, Australia, Asia and Europe.

The company is expanding into wafers due to the production of tax credits included in the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar wafer manufacturers receive $12/m2.

“I am very grateful that the bill passed because it will not only lower energy prices and help the country meet its climate goals, but also boost U.S. manufacturing and create jobs. At SPI, we are all focused on scaling as quickly as possible to provide customers with a more affordable, clean and resilient way to power their homes and lives,” said Xiaofeng Denton Peng, chairman and CEO of SPI Energy, in a press release. “As a global expert in the renewable energy industry and pioneer in mass production of solar wafers, we are able to start the state-of-the-art solar wafer manufacturing plant in the US with leading technologies.”

SPI Energy/SolarJuice entered the US market after purchasing a list of yet-to-be-built residential solar contracts from bankrupt solar installer PetersdenDean in 2021. SPI Energy also acquired the name Solar4America from PetersenDean. In April 2021, SPI Energy launched a 360 W solar module under the brand name Solar4America. The company also launched a Amazon Store for Solar4America branded products.

SPI Energy began manufacturing 450W and 550W solar panels at its Sacramento plant earlier this year. The plant originally started with an annual output of 200 MW, but the company planned to reach 1.1 GW by the end of this year.

Comments are closed.