REC Solar ASA Plans Panel Manufacturing Expansion
After good performance in the final quarter of last year and the dust settling from its solar and silicon operations split, REC says it is now ready to accelerate growth.
According to consolidated re-presented results; Q4 2013 saw REC produce 228 MW of solar panels, with module cash costs down 10% over the previous 12 months.
REC says it will further capitalise on improved market conditions and has commenced an investment program that will see its module manufacturing capacity increase to 1 GW by the third quarter of this year.
The company is also exploring the possibility of further increasing its capacity to 1.3 GW by 2015.
“2013 has been a turning point for REC after a challenging period for the solar sector,” says Øyvind Hasaas, CEO of REC Solar ASA
“Improving market conditions, our strong market position as a supplier of high quality solar panels and continued cost reductions have contributed to the improved margins.”
Japan is becoming a major market for REC solar panels, with the company expecting around 25% of its modules to be shipped to the country in 2014.
In other recent REC news, the company announced it is partnering with the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE to develop n-type monocrystalline wafer based high-efficiency solar cells.
N-type monocrystalline cells usually require the use of an expensive silver contact grid on the reverse of the cell. Researchers at Fraunhofer ISE have developed a cell structure that uses a combination of dielectric layers and localized contacts.
“By combining our manufacturing excellence with the new technology developed at Fraunhofer ISE, we are taking another step towards making solar energy a source of clean energy that is accessible and affordable to all,” said REC’s Senior Vice President of Operations and Technology, Ter Soon Kim.