Saint-Gobain: accelerated growth in PV solar sector

Saint-Gobain has announced the building of a third high-efficiency PV panels facility in Korea, in association with Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. (HHI), after launching the construction of a seco…

Saint-Gobain has announced the building of a third high-efficiency PV panels facility in Korea, in association with Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. (HHI), after launching the construction of a second Avancis plant in Germany, in June. The first manufacturing facility for the 50-50 joint venture will be designed identically – both in manufacturing capacity and technology terms – to the second Avancis plant currently under construction in Germany. The facility will produce an annual volume of 850,000 modules based on CIGS (Copper – Indium – Gallium – Selenide) thin-film technology, designed for roofs and solar fields, equivalent to an annual power output of 100 MW, or the yearly energy requirements of a town with 15,000 inhabitants. The site is scheduled to start operations the second quarter of 2012 and will supply the global market with modules marketed independently by Avancis and HHI. With this investment, Saint-Gobain significantly accelerates its growth on the solar market, by banking on a competitive and innovative technology. This latest illustration of the Group“s commitment to renewable energies testifies to the growth potential of Avancis, the reference player on the high-efficiency thin-film PV modules market, states Pierre-Andre de Chalendar, Chairman and CEO of Compagnie de Saint-Gobain. Already well located in Korea (particularly in Flat Glass where it has four float lines and several processing units for the automotive and building sectors), Saint-Gobain strengthens its position in this country in association with HHI, whose industrial and technological know-how is recognized worldwide, declares Jean-Pierre Floris, senior vice-president of Compagnie de Saint-Gobain and president of the Innovative Materials Sector. By expanding into the high-efficiency CIGS PV market, under a joint-venture with Saint-Gobain, HHI is on track with its plan to become a global supplier in the renewable energy sector via innovation and diversification. Above all, HHI will be one step closer to achieving the global commitment of pursuing an era of clean energy. We believe that we will soon fulfil these commitments that will provide a strong foundation for our future generations, says Keh-Sik Min, Chairman of Hyundai Heavy Industries. Saint-Gobain has locations in 64 countries and over 190,000 employees, providing innovative solutions to meet growing demand in emerging and mature countries, for energy efficiency and for environmental protection. Saint-Gobain Solar combines all Saint-Gobain businesses in the solar sector.