Solarion AG starts construction of the new plant in Zwenkau near Leipzig

Photovoltaic specialist invests 40 million Euro

Leipzig, (PresseBox) - With a symbolic first cut of spade the Solarion AG today started the construction of an integrated cell and module factory in the presence of the Saxon State Minister of Economic Affairs, Labor and Transport, Sven Morlok. On a site with a dimension of three hectares in the new industrial park Zwenkau-South (section of the industrial park Leipzig-South) first Solarion's production facility for mass manufacturing of thin-film solar cells and modules is being developed. "Today's cut of spade constitutes an important and future-oriented event for Saxony's solar industry and the further development of the location. Especially in the world of today in which renewable energies become increasingly essential for a sustainable, safe and affordable energy supply, completely new chances are opening up for Saxony's solar industry. At the same time the event is a sign for excellent growth perspectives after the difficulties during the last years for the industrial sector", Minister Morlok emphasizes in his greeting.

The company in Leipzig invests about 40 million Euros in the plant and creates 90 new jobs. As a whole, 140 employees will be working in the plant with a production area of 12,000 square metres. The annual production volume is designed for 20 megawatt. At the beginning of 2012 the factory goes into service. "The construction project is an important step to transform our research and development services within the context of pilot production into mass production. Photovoltaic has great perspectives and with our unique technology we will develop an important market share", Dr. Karsten Otte, CEO of the Solarion AG, said. The investment of the new plant is promoted by funds of the Free State of Saxony.

In the plant Solarion produces highly efficient and at the same time cost-effective thin-film solar modules using copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS). This technology has the highest efficiency potential in the photovoltaic thin-film sector. Thanks to the future-oriented material qualities as well as the patented manufacturing processes Solarion aims at a leading position on the photovoltaic market.

Among others the commitment of the large Asian group Walsin Lihwa Corporation (TWSE: 1605) facilitated the introduction of series production. With 40 million Euros its wholly owned subsidiary Ally Energy acquired an interest in October last year with 49 percent. Within the context of an extensive technological cooperation both companies commonly further develop the thin-film technology.

By means of Solarion's first cut of spade at the same time the development of the new industrial park Zwenkau-South is being initiated. The area with a size of 15 hectares is being developed by the Weidenhammer Packaging Group (WPG) together with the administration union Böhlen-Lippendorf. The WPG, one of the both leading suppliers of composite cans, composite drums and plastic containers worldwide, considerably extends its previous Zwenkau production facilities in the industrial area and now is delighted to be able to welcome the first neighbor. "As a company that has been located in Zwenkau since 2006 we are fully convinced of the advantages of this location. The new industrial area provides us space for further growth of our plastics business. All the more we are extremely pleased that with Solarion another globally acting company could be won for 'Zwenkau South'. We are looking forward to a good neighborhood and cooperation", Ralf Weidenhammer, the managing director of the Weidenhammer Packaging Group, says.

Solarion AG / Photovoltaik

Leipzig-based Solarion AG specialises in the development, production and marketing of highly-efficient and at the same time cost-effective thin-film solar modules using copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) technology.

Solarion's technology is based on the patented ion-beam deposition of the CIGS absorber in a roll-to-roll process. The advantages of this technology are its low deposition temperature, improved solar cell efficiency, higher process speed as well as lower energy and material costs. The utilisation of a flexible carrier enables completely new applications in the area of solar energy production.

Solarion AG was founded in 2000 and has opened the first European industrial pilot-line for the manufacture of highly-flexible and ultra-lightweight CIGS thin-film solar cells on a polymer substrate in 2002.

Following the successful signing of an investment cooperation agreement with the Taiwanese Walsin Lihwa Corporation in October 2010, the company is currently setting up a 20 MW production facility for solar cells and solar modules at its Leipzig site.

The market launch of frameless glass-glass modules is planned for 2012 and flexible foil modules will be available from 2013.

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