»Libertas« study to prepare for »revitalization« of German PV industry

The German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection is funding a feasibility study on how to re-establish a complete photovoltaic industry in Germany and Europe. The »Libertas« study aims to clarify »how the entire ecosystem of manufacturing, mechanical engineering, supply chain, research institutes as well as qualified personnel can be fully established in the shortest possible time.« The authors are the VDMA German Engineering Federation as well as RCT Solutions, an engineering service provider based in Constance, Germany, which is active worldwide in the development of solar factory projects, and the International Solar Energy Research Center (ISC Konstanz). Other stakeholders are invited to participate; a questionnaire will be prepared for this purpose. A workshop is also planned at the Intersolar trade fair in Munich next June.
The study consortium is quite optimistic and self-confident about the task at hand. In 2005, its press release reads, »German companies were world market leaders in the production of solar modules« – which is admittedly not true: Just under 20 percent of all solar cells came from Germany in 2005, 45 percent from Japan, and the ratios were similar for modules. In terms of the required know-how, the conditions are favorable in any case, according to Wolfgang Jooss, chief technology officer (CTO) at RCT Solutions: »Germany is in a position to set up a large, fully integrated production immediately.«

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