Meyer Burger receives €22.5 million in public funding to build solar cell production in Germany
Post date: 05/01/2021 - 10:16
Swiss Meyer Burger Technology Ltd announced, that the German state of Saxony-Anhalt and the Federal Republic of Germany are pledging up to €15 million ($18,3 million) in environmental protection aid for the establishment of heterojunction (HJT) solar cell production in Thalheim (city of Bitterfeld-Wolfen), Germany. In addition, an investment grant in the amount of €7.5 million has been awarded within the framework of public financial assistance for the improvement of the regional economic structure (GRW) for the assembling of the production facility in Thalheim.
The basis for the approval of the environmental protection aid is a specifically drafted expert’s opinion from the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems. According to the company, the report confirms that Meyer Burger's heterojunction technology for solar cell production has »significant environmental advantages compared to conventional manufacturing processes.«
The additionally awarded public investment grant (GRW) in the amount of €7.5 million for the construction of a new production facility in Bitterfeld-Wolfen may be drawn through the end of 2023.
A prerequisite for the disbursement of the grants is a confirmation of financing for the planned investments in the production site, which allows for an annual capacity of 1.4 GW. According to CEO Gunter Erfurt, »Meyer Burger is confident to meet this requirement.«
The establishment of the HJT production lines and the sales organization are »progressing according to plan.« Production will start in the second quarter of 2021 with annually 0.4 GW of solar cells and 0.4 GW of solar modules. The further processing of the solar cells into solar modules takes place in Freiberg (Saxony). The production capacity of solar cells is to be expanded to 1.4 GW in a next step and as quickly as possible, subject to successful debt financing.
In November 2020, Meyer Burger appointed Moritz Borgmann as managing director of the newly founded Meyer Burger (Industries) GmbH as of February 1, 2021. This entity will manufacture the highly efficient heterojunction solar cells and SmartWire solar modules.
Moritz Borgmann will thus be responsible for the sales of solar modules, in addition to marketing, product management and business development. His focus will be on establishing the new sales organization and executing Meyer Burger's strategy commercially to achieve the goals of its realignment from an equipment manufacturer to a solar cell and module manufacturer, stated the company.