Finnish company Valoe is all set produce solar cells in the second half of this year, after acquiring JCS SoliTek (SoliTek) from Global BOD Group, in Lithuania.
After the acquisition is completed, Valoe aims to modify a plant in Vilnius, to produce Interdigitated Back Contact (IBC) cells. Production of the solar cells is expected to begin in the second quarter, if Valoe arranges a financing of €5m to complete the project.
As per Valoe, the new solar cell plant is expected to be one of the few productions plants in the world where IBC or similar will be manufactured. The annual production capacity of the plant is estimated to be about 60MW at the first stage and it could be doubled to 120MW with minor investments.
Valoe CEO Iikka Savisalo said: “Our own solar cell production and especially production of the IBC cells is an achievement that we could only dream about couple of years ago. So far, this deal is the most important step for Valoe to meet its strategic goals. Now, Valoe has a chance to get to the same technology level with LG, Sunpower and Panasonic. We trust that we are able to compete in terms of both quality and price.”
The plant has already sold about 20MW of annual production capacity for the next two years from the start of the production.
Valoe will begin modification of the solar cell plant together with International Solar Energy Research Center Konstanz (ISC Konstanz) immediately. As per a technology transfer agreement signed last May, ISC Konstanz has committed to provide certain quality requirements for the IBC cells.
The company also intends to use part of the plant’s capacity to produce its own Chrystal modules.
Savisalo said: “Valoe’s back contact module, having a glass-glass structure and IBC cells that have longer economic lifetime, is expected to last more than 40 years. We are now one step closer to our goal to provide technology for generating solar energy with the lowest cost over its lifetime, Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE).”