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Monday, January 28, 2008

RSI Silicon: Solar Grade Silicon from Pennsylvania (then Alabama)

Novel process begins with a Sodium Silicate (Na2SiO3) precursor in solution.
The complete production process patent has been published by WIPO.
RSI Silicon claims Solar Grade Silicon production will start in Q2 2008 with 1000 metric ton annual capacity.

RSI (Reaction Sciences, Inc.) Silicon is commercializing a process for six nines (6N) or 99.9999+% pure solar grade silicon that does not require metallurgical silicon (mg-Si) as in an input. Proven polysilicon and solar grade silicon production processes all share metallurgical silicon as a feedstock including the Siemens, Fluidized Bed Reactor, and upgraded metallurgical processes.

After noticing a recent increase in traffic and interest regarding Easton, Pennsylvania USA, based RSI Silicon, I redoubled my efforts to research and establish a dialog with the company.

Since a small blurb I wrote in Solar Light Flashes: November 15, 2007, RSI Silicon has corrected (or scaled back?) their initial pilot line production plans in 2008 from 5000 to 1000 metric tons.

Dr. Steve Amendola, along with his experienced team, has commenced building the first plant. It is envisaged that production at the 1,000 metric tonne (bold added) per annum plant based in Northampton County, Pennsylvania, will commence Q2 2008.

In an apparent new development, the RSI Silicon website details ambitious expansion plans:

RSI anticipates completing a new plant in Alabama in 2009 that will have a production capacity of 24,000 metric tonnes per annum, adding a new 5,000 tonne furnace in 2010 and 2011.

First, for the impatient, here is the key Reaction Sciences, Inc., international patent published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO):


A method for preparation of high purity silicon suitable for photovoltaic cells using reduction of silica, which is pre-purified in an aqueous solution, in presence of a reducing agent, preferably carbonaceous agent, where the pre-purified silica has a low amount of boron suitable for photovoltaic cells is described.

RSI Silicon’s production process for solar grade silicon can be outlined in simplified form as follows. I’ve left out the addition of sulfuric acid to adjust pH, details about the steps, and optional steps for clarity.

  • Sodium silicate (Na2SiO3) is dissolved in deionized water to create an aqueous solution for chemical processing into high purity silica (SiO2).
  • The solution is filtered to remove insoluble materials including most of the phosphorus by first adding calcium or magnesium to the solution.
  • Boron is removed using a chelating agent such as AMBERLITE IRA734, an ion exchange resin. RSI Silicon’s tests and projections indicate Boron levels of 0.1ppm or lower after this step.
  • After being allowed to stand, a pure silica gel precipitates and is filtered and dried at up to 1400 °C (degrees Celsius). The silica is crystallized into briquette form.
  • In the final step, the same Carbothermic Reduction process, used to produce metallurgical silicon in a submerged arc furnace and described in Solar Grade Silicon roads lead to Ruše - Part 2, separates the oxygen from the pure silica (SiO2) to yield the Solar Grade Silicon.

There are two similarities to the Solarvalue AG process. Both methods begin with high purity inputs. RSI Silicon uses a chemical process to produce higher purity silica than any natural quartz. Like Solarvalue, RSI Silicon requires high purity carbon for the Carbothermic Reduction process to avoid contaminating the purified silica. However, RSI Silicon is even concerned about tapping the arc furnace in air and specifies the silicon be cooled in an inert gas atmosphere such as argon or helium.

RSI Silicon has not acknowledged my requests for an interview. Because of inconsistencies on the RSI Silicon website, I would like to reconfirm this company’s schedules and plans.

At the H&R Block digits community site, the Macworld post has a slideshow (slide 10 et al.) capturing the Photovoltaic Blogger enjoying a Blog and Brew and includes a link to my Going SOLIO at Macworld 2008 post.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

REC Group Capital Markets Day 2008

2008 Margin outlook triggers the solar stock to sell off through Blue Monday.
Search underway for a potential expansion site to locate about 25000 MT of polysilicon production capacity.

Beginning with their Capital Markets Day 2008 event on Friday, January 18, 2007, Renewable Energy Corporation ASA (OSL:REC) shares declined 38.6% in two trading days before rallying 13.2% on Tuesday, January 22, 2007.

Per this Reuters report, REC sees margin dipping in 2008, rising from 2009, by Aasa Christine Stoltz, the margin drop in 2008 is caused by a doubling of expansion costs. REC Group CEO Erik Thorsen said:

There is a concentration of ramp-ups (of projects) in 2008, which we will benefit from in 2010 and onwards. That's why we are indicating that our expansion costs will go from 2.5 percent in 2007 and ending at about 5 percent.

While there are eight Capital Markets Day presentations about technology, business divisions, projects, and finance available on the REC website, I found the REC Silicon Presentation by Executive Vice President Gøran Bye the most interesting and relevant.

Here are a few key points from REC Silicon presentation.

REC Silicon projects 125000 to 160000 MT (Metric Tons) of total realistic polysilicon production capacity through 2012 or enough for about 11 to 16 GW (GigaWatts) of crystalline silicon solar modules. In REC Silicon’s view, one-quarter (25%) or less of all announced, planned, and rumored polysilicon capacity expansions by new entrants (Tier 2 and Tier 3) will succeed by 2012.

From 2006 to 2008, REC Silicon forecasts the silane (SiH4) gas merchant market will have greater than 30% CAGR (compound annual growth rate) to about 3000 MT in 2008. Silane gas demand is driven by semiconductors, flat panel displays, and photovoltaics. As reported in Key a-Si thin-film solar cell chemical subject to price pressure by Nuying Huang and Esther Lam at DIGITIMES (subscription may be required), supply fears are increasing silane prices for amorphous silicon thin film module production. REC Silicon plans to leverage the silane demand trend by continuing to service the merchant market and is implementing a take-or-pay, long-term contracts strategy.

Beyond approved investments of about NOK (Norwegian Krone) 6.5 billion or USD $1.19 Billion, REC Silicon announced the search for a potential expansion site to locate about 25000 MT of polysilicon production capacity consisting of four 6500 MT Moses Lake Reference Plant scale facilities with an early 2012 ramp target. In the research note, Renewable Energy: Sell-off represents buying opportunity, Piper Jaffray & Co. Sr. Research Analyst Torben Sommer said:

This new facility will either be located in Iceland, Canada or USA – close to cheap electricity. We expect an announcement later in 2008.

In addition, REC said they are evaluating sites for silane gas production dedicated to (the) merchant market.

I have two closing notes for regular Blog readers.

  • GUNTHER Portfolio has joined the featured blogs at Greentech Media.
  • I have been getting a lot of emails so it may take a while to get a reply. I try, but I don’t always manage to reply to everyone.

One thing to remember about silane: It’s a gas.


Monday, January 21, 2008

ersol Thin Film: solar (sales) at work

Nova-T thin film modules really in production and shipping
500 kWp solar farm to be built in Grevenbroich, Germany

On Friday, January 18, 2007, ersol Solar Energy AG (FRA:ES6) subsidiary, ersol Thin Film GmbH, announced the Sales launch of ersol Thin Film modules (Deutsch) with the signing of a 500 kWp (kilowatt-peak) module supply contract with K+C Schmidt Gbr.

Nova-T module datasheets or specifications were not available at the time of the press release. Just after the ersol Analyst Conference at the 8. Forum Solarpraxis, I heard the Nova-T amorphous silicon (a-Si) module efficiency was 5.5% implying an approximate 79 Wp (Watt-peak) power rating. If the Nova-T indeed has a 79 Wp specification, this deal involves almost 6330 modules.

Contrast these implied specifications with the recent SCHOTT Solar GmbH announcement, SCHOTT ASI 86: First Shipments From New Thin Film Factory in Jena. SCHOTT Solar produces the same sized a-Si modules based on similar Oerlikon Solar process and production equipment. SCHOTT’s ASI 86 module has 86 Wp nominal power output or about 5.93% module efficiency.

The Nova-T a-Si thin film modules are from series production and are supposed to be delivered in January and February 2008 to K+C Schmidt Gbr, a Grevenbroich, Germany, based investor, for deployment in an open space system solar farm project also located in Grevenbroich, the German capital of energy. The press release states:

The 500 kW plant equipped with ersol thin-film modules – to be operated by K+C Schmidt itself – is due to go on stream shortly and will contribute to power generation from regenerative energy.

K+C Schmidt Gbr is an affiliate company of K+C Schmidt GmbH, a real estate broker in Grevenbroich, which today operates a wind energy plant and a small photovoltaic plant.

ersol said:

This represents a decisive step for ersol Thin Film in launching this module type on the market by way of a first major project in Germany.

And this is a decisive step compared to ersol Thin Film’s indecisive second half of 2007 as their plans for a-Si thin film module production were off and then on again. ersol Thin Film Managing Director Peter Schneidewind also said:

This supply contract marks the beginning of our marketing activities. We are currently negotiating with several potential customers. So I am delighted to say that we are on the verge of signing further contracts.

I have to wonder if ersol Thin Film’s off and on yo-yo plans broke their earlier customer contracts? I hope they got things “Right from the start.” now though.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Going SOLIO at Macworld 2008

[San Francisco, California USA]

Hybrid Solar Chargers for your Apple (and other) gadgets and gear

After navigating swarms of Apple enthusiasts at the Macworld Expo registration desk to pick up my badge on the first Expo day, it took about ten (10) minutes in the Moscone Center West Exhibit Hall to find the only solar product company with a stand at the entire Exhibition.

Fresh (or tired?) from the 2008 International CES launch, SOLIO was charging iPods and iPhones with their new SOLIO Magnesium (SOLIO Mg) solar charger. Like the earlier SOLIO Classic, the SOLIO Mg edition unfurls into a solar array with three leaves in order to capture and convert sunlight into direct current (DC) to charge an internal lithium ion battery. In turn, the internal SOLIO Mg battery charges up your gadget’s own internal battery via a DC to DC converter.

SOLIO Mg can store more power than the Classic with a reported larger 3.7 V (Volt) 1800 mAh (milliampere hour) lithium ion battery. In addition, SOLIO Mg adds Universal iGo Tip System compatibility to increase device connectivity and includes an Adapter Tip System Cable with a female USB tip. SOLIO Mg continues the hybrid solar charger tradition by offering the option to plug into the grid and charge at night or during foul weather. The solar cells appear to be multicrytalline silicon, but I was unable to obtain any details about the cells or the supplier.

For more information on the other SOLIO family products, view the technical specifications or visit the product store pages for SOLIO H1000 and SOLIO Classic. SOLIO products are designed, manufactured, and marketed by BETTER ENERGY SYSTEMS COMPANY, Ltd.

At the SOLIO Stand 4616 in Moscone West, special discounts are being offered for SOLIO products sold at Macworld this week: SOLIO H1000 $60 (list $69.95), SOLIO Classic $90 (list 99.95), and SOLIO Magnesium $160 (list $199.95).

Don’t forget to visit the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) Stand (near 4116 or 4210?) in the same Moscone West Hall and make your annual donation. Find out more About EFF. I would have gotten this post out yesterday if I had not attended EFF's 17th Birthday Party.

As it turns out, the Going Solio title has already been done Down Under.

And the Battle of the Blogger Lounges goes to H&R Block’s Tango BlogSpot with a cordial Blog and Brew atmosphere over the W like nonexclusive snobbery of Microsoft’s The Blogger Lounge.

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Photovoltaic Conference and Exhibition Preview 2008

Significant photovoltaic conferences and events in 2008

In chronological order, here are the conferences I am interested in covering or following in 2008. The schedule is packed with three new conferences and events versus last year, and my focus remains technical conferences and business to business trade shows, not regional marketing or sales events. Location alignment results in two events each for San Francisco, San Diego, and Munich.

Concentrated Solar Power USA
January 28-29, 2008
San Francisco, California USA

As I mentioned in Photovoltaics: 2007 Post Review and 2008 Trends to Watch – Part 2, Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) is the hottest solar power segment. Second in a series, the Event Overview is titled:

How to build - and run - a profitable Concentrated Solar Power plant
Everything you need to know to turn your CSP project into reality

This looks like the perfect event to smarten up on CSP and network with Who's Attending.

Clean Technology & Renewables Conference
February 20, 2008
New York City, New York USA

This Piper Jaffray & Co. (NYSE:PJC) invitation only event caught my attention last year with Solaria spills low concentration photovoltaic technology at Symposium. With Sr. Research Analyst Jesse Pichel and team doing great Photovoltaic (PV) Industry research, this is one of the best investor conferences to attend =if= you can wrangle an invite.

Concentrated Photovoltaic Summit ‘08
April 1-2, 2008
Madrid, Spain

This Concentrator PhotoVoltaics (CPV) summit, “CPV goes commercial – how to build, maintain and run a profitable CPV plant”, has an impressive speaker list and is realized by First Conferences Ltd. who are also the folks behind the above mentioned Concentrated Solar Power USA. However, the timing conflicts with…

Photovoltaic Technology Show 2008 Europe
April 2-4, 2008 (Conferences April 1-4, 2008)
Munich (München), Germany

While the Photovoltaic Technology Show is a photovoltaic production equipment exhibition, this show is a nexus for four distinct PHOTON EXPO conferences held during the first four (4) days of April:

6th Solar Silicon Conference - April 1, 2008
3rd PV Production Equipment Conference - April 2, 2008
3rd PV Investors Conference - April 3, 2008
2nd PV Glass Conference - April 4, 2008

The sister Photovoltaic Technology Show 2008 Asia event is being held this week on January 16-18, 2008, in Shenzhen, China, with the same four (4) day conference schedule from January 15-18, 2008, including the debut of the PV Glass Conference. PHOTON claims the 5th Solar Silicon Conference in Shenzhen will cover “Chinese and Eastern European projects” while Munich’s 6th Solar Silicon Conference will focus on established industry leaders.

33rd IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC 33)
May 11-16, 2008
San Diego, California USA

This conference could create some US based competition for the 23rd European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC).

Intersolar 2008
June 12-14, 2008 (PV Industry Forum 2008 June 10-11, 2008)
Munich (München), Germany

In order to expand, this year Intersolar moves from Freiburg im Breisgau to the New Munich Trade Fair Centre. Per Quantum Leap for Intersolar Trade Fair, this big trade fair goes huge with an over 80% increase in exhibition area. The Solar Promotion sponsored PV Industry Forum expands to cover the two days before Intersolar 2008 opens.

SEMICON West 2008 / Intersolar North America 2008
July 15-17, 2008 Exhibition
San Francisco, California USA

Please see Intersolar North America 2008 for my write up on this new event. The SEMICON West conference program and events run from July 14-18, 2008.

23rd European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition
September 1-5, 2008
Valencia, Spain

The 23rd European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition continues as my must cover conference selection for 2008. With the comprehensive conference program, EPIA’s 5th European PV Industry Forum, and the expanded trade exhibition, this is the best annual technical and business to business solar conference and exhibition.

Solar Power 2008
October 13-16, 2008
San Diego, California USA

The Solar Power Conference and Expo has established itself as the premiere US solar business to business event attracting well over 10,000 visitors in 2007. Intersolar North America 2008 will look to mount a challenge to this position.

21st NREL Industry Growth Forum
Fall 2008 (specific date not announced)
USA (location not announced)

A great two day conference about technologies the latest solar startups are developing for commercialization and pitching to venture capitalists and investors.There was dearth of NREL Forum press coverage in 2007 despite the rising interest in renewable energy technologies. Although I did not attend, I managed to post Wakonda Technologies wins at the 20th NREL Industry Growth Forum. NREL's 20th Industry Growth Forum Presentations are available here.

9. Forum Solarpraxis
November 2008
Berlin, Germany

I had a productive 8. Forum Solarpraxis leading to the post, Solarvalue AG Analyst Conference at the 8. Forum Solarpraxis, and the impromptu site visit In Search of Nanosolar GmbH.

Honorable mention:
November 25-28, 2008
Milan, Italy

The 5th INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION ON THE PHOTOVOLTAIC INDUSTRY AND TECHNOLOGIES lands in the Fiera Milano. Although this exhibition may have a regional focus, it is hard to ignore a photovoltaic production equipment trade fair.

Of course, I plan to cover the 2008 California Clean Tech Open (CCTO), and I await details on the event schedule and the regional expansion plans for the competition.

I decided to skip the 2008 International CES (Consumer Electronics Show) from January 7-10, 2008, in Las Vegas, Nevada USA. Instead of the CES consolation prize, I will be attending the Macworld Conference & Expo tomorrow. I’m not sure there will be anything solar, but I will keep my eyes open.

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Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Sol3g inaugurates High Concentration PhotoVoltaics factory

New 5 MWp factory in Terrassa (Barcelona) Spain
8 kWp pilot plant installed at Enel in Catania (Sicily) Italy

Sol3g, S.L. today announced the inauguration of their new 800 square meter (8611 square feet) production plant with an annual capacity of five (5) MWp (MegaWatt-peak). The factory will produce HCPV (High Concentration PhotoVoltaic) M40 Modules. Here is the M40 Datasheet (Español).

Employing up to 80 workers, Sol3g could increase production capacity to 10 MWp by year end 2008. Sol3g also claims to have developed a model factory and production process with Terrassa that can be duplicated on an international basis to address local demand.

Here is the pair of press releases: Sol3g inaugurates a new factory in Terrassa and Pilot installation for Enel in Sicily.

Sol3g’s original plan was to ramp production in the first half of 2007 per Sol3g talks M40 HCPV Solar Modules and Systems at Intersolar. In the supporting materials, Sol3g also said:

Besides, Sol3g plans to install over 800 kW in several significant projects, among which include 400 kW awarded by ISFOC (Instituto de Sistemas Fotovoltaicos de Concentración) in Castilla La Mancha.

In November 2007, Sol3g installed the first of two HCPV pilot plant systems for Enel S.p.A. (BIT:ENEL) in Catania, Italy. This was Sol3g’s first deployment using terrestrial III-V Triple Junction solar cells which I presume were supplied by AZUR SPACE Solar Power GmbH. Please see Sol3g secures Triple Junction Solar Cells from Azur Space for further details.

Sol3g worked with Italian partner company SGS Future to install the M40 modules on a FEiNA SCP SC16 two-axis tracker.

Per this Enel strategy for zero emission power generation presentation (see slides 20-23) from the Embassy of Italy in Budapest website, Enel is evaluating two HCPV prototypes from Sol3g and perhaps Sharp at their Catania PV laboratories and the following solar technologies:

150kW Si-based concentrating technology
420kW Multi-junction concentrating technology
300 kW Flat modules on tracking system

at their Adrano PV demonstration site located near Catania.

The Enel presentation also discusses The Archimede project (slides 16-19). This is an innovative solar thermodynamic plant with net power of 4.7 MWe (Megawatt electric) to be built in Priolo Gargallo near Siracusa (Syracuse), Italy, next to and integrated with an existing Natural Gas Combined Cycle (NGCC) plant.

Enel details the reasons they selected this particular site for The Archimede project unlike some companies.

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Monday, January 07, 2008

Photovoltaics: 2007 Post Review and 2008 Trends to Watch – Part 2

My Top 5 Headlines and Posts, Top 5 Most Popular Posts, and 5 Trends to Watch in 2008

Polysilicon shortages, Thin Film Photovoltaics, CSP, HCPV, and Recession Risk

First, I want to thank Katie Fehrenbacher over at Earth2Tech for linking to Photovoltaics: 2007 Post Review and 2008 Trends to Watch – Part 1 in the January 3rd, 2008, post of The Daily Sprout.

Before getting to the 5 Trends to Watch in 2008, let’s look at the Top 5 Most Popular Posts of 2007 with readers and subscribers. Skip ahead if you just CANNOT wait.

Even though I use Site Meter to track my Blog statistics, selecting the Top 5 posts of readers and subscribers is a bit subjective for these reasons:

  • Site Meter tracks a sliding window of visits much less than a year of traffic and just tallies entry and exit pages.
  • Many visitors to the Blog enter through the home page,
  • Google search results tend to favor the first of my Blog’s multiple posts on a specific topic.

Top 5 Most Popular Posts of 2007 with readers and subscribers:

5 Trends to Watch in 2008 and predictions:

Polysilicon and solar grade silicon shortages persist

Per the Price of scrap wafer closes to polysilicon at bidding market by Nuying Huang and Esther Lam at DIGITIMES (subscription may be required), spot market polysilicon prices rose to USD $300-330 per kilogram (kg) in the second half of 2007. Production delays have been the norm for new entrants like AE Polysilicon, Solarvalue, and numerous Chinese polysilicon start-ups. This silicon shortage seems set to continue until at least 2010 regardless of the self serving predictions of certain Solar CEOs.

Thin Film Photovoltaics

At the start of 2008, First Solar is the king of the hill in thin films and photovoltaics with the lowest variable production cost per Watt in the industry. Will Micromorph Tandem thin film panels produced by Oerlikon Solar production equipment and perhaps later by Applied Materials Solar begin to compete? Or will Nanosolar, Inc. Utility Panels assume leadership based upon CIGS (copper indium gallium diselenide) nanoparticle ink printed on metal foils with both lower variable production costs and lower capital expenditure costs per Watt?

While everyone is searching for a Nanosolar module datasheet, it isn’t so easy to find a FIRST SOLAR - FS-262 / FS-265 / FS-267 / FS-270 datasheet either.

CSP (Concentrating Solar Power)

CSP is positioned to remain the hottest segment in solar power. I expect the drawbacks of CSP to become better known in 2008 though these may be offset by progress in energy storage (see the Ausra, Inc. portion of my Energy Storage post).

HCPV (High Concentration PhotoVoltaics)

Contrary to other claims, the largest HCPV (the “H” here stands for Heliostat) project to date is the 154MW Victorian Project in Victoria, Australia, discussed in my PV Industry Forum 2007 post. In 2008, I am expecting the next major High Concentration PhotoVoltaics project to be announced and located in the southwestern United States, Spain, or Greece. Construction may even begin in 2008.

Recession Risk

As I first suggested in Solar Power 2007: Discussion Panels Aplenty – Part 3, it now appears my recession fears were not unfounded. I said:

My fear is the US housing bubble and its liquidity crunch aftermath will result in a slowdown or recession in 2008 later impacting the world economy. I observe the PV Industry and Renewable Energy boom has coincided with a robust long term expansion of the global economy, and I wonder if concerns about global warming will continue to drive high PV Industry growth rates through a global recession.

Will concerns over global warming and sustainable secure energy solutions trump the normal business cycle? By contrast, will photovoltaics thrive in regions with feed-in tariffs goosed by falling interest rates or will stagflation be worse than a recession?

And here is my out there bonus prediction:

Solar Stocks, Oil, and Gold

A majority of investors seem convinced solar stocks and these two commodities are poised to reach new highs in 2008. While two out of three ain’t bad, I predict only one of these will pan out.

Solar stocks traded on the NYSE and NASDAQ exchanges in the United States are overdue for a significant correction. I think oil may revisit $50 per barrel if the recession goes global by the second half of 2008 barring an unforseen calamity and even if Peak Oil is here. Gold is your best bet if stagflation takes hold or the US dollar continues to decline in value or both.

For another viewpoint, check out Earth2Tech’s Predictions for 2008.

Debuting in 2006 and despite updates, the top three (3) most read Blog posts of all time have now achieved classic post status:

This is GUNTHER Portfolio Post 200!
Thanks again to all the readers, subscribers, and friends of GUNTHER Portfolio.

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Friday, January 04, 2008

AE Polysilicon: Final Plan Approved

Ground breaking expected in mid-January 2008 at the Keystone Industrial Port Complex (KIPC)
Production delay of one quarter based on construction cycle of eight (8) to nine (9) months.

One month after the delay I mentioned in AE Polysilicon: Preliminary Plan Approved, AE Polysilicon Corporation was back on the December 18, 2007, Meeting Agenda of the Falls Township Board of Supervisors:


In his presentation to the Board, AE Polysilicon Attorney Mr. Ed Murphy, McBride and Murphy, said:

We’d like to break ground to start this facility sometime within the next 30 days or so because they’d like to have the facility up and operating and producing product before the end of 2008.

As soon as we receive the air permit from DEP and any other local permits, we’d like to start earth moving activities as quickly as possible because the business plan anticipates an eight to nine month construction cycle and they’d like to have the facility up and operating and making product before the end of 2008.

Overriding what was said at the October 16, 2007, meeting, Mr. Murphy indicated both Cell #1 and Cell #2 will be built in construction Phase 1 while reiterating initial production of 1500 metric tons of polysilicon.

A staff engineer with AE Polysilicon in effect told the board fifty (50) percent of the polysilicon production will be sent to Motech Solar (a division of Motech Industries Inc., TPO:6244) in Taiwan. Per Motech and AE Polysilicon ink Polycrystalline Silicon Feedstock Supply Agreement, Motech is both a customer and investor in AE Polysilicon. The staff engineer said the balance of the polysilicon will be available for purchase by other solar wafer and cell manufacturers.

Jonathan Snipes, Chairman of the Falls Township Board of Supervisors, said I am hoping other solar panel manufacturers are listening and will consider locating their wafer and cell manufacturing right next to AE Polysilicon at the KIPC to leverage the polysilicon production.

After the AE Polysilicon presentation, supervisor questions, and no public comments, the Falls Township Board of Supervisors voted 4-0 to approve resolution #07-40 granting the AE POLYSILICON - FINAL LAND DEVELOPMENT plan with Supervisor Vislosky abstaining.

Please see the complementary article AE Polysilicon to Start Construction by Jennifer Kho at Greentech Media along with the prior Silicon Setback.

An online video of AE Polysilicon’s presentation, discussion, and approval vote is available at the Falls Township Board Of Supervisors Meeting - December 18, 2007. Click on:

Part 1 of 5 - 7:32pm to 8:14pm (timestamp range 8:07:13 to 8:14:44)
Part 2 of 5 - 8:14pm to 8:54pm (timestamp range 8:14:58 to 8:19:50)

to view the videos. Part 2 loads right away and has the best content including the approval.

Looking for a job or career in polysilicon? Here are the Current Positions Available with AE Polysilicon.

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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Photovoltaics: 2007 Post Review and 2008 Trends to Watch – Part 1

My Top 5 Headlines and Posts, Top 5 Most Popular Posts, and 5 Trends to Watch in 2008

As usual, I am a day or two late on the ubiquitous 2007 Blog year in review and 2008 trends post.

2007 started off strong with the second installment of the Solarvalue Ruše series:

Solar Grade Silicon roads lead to Ruše - Part 2 (Part 1, Part 3)

And the Blog ramped in popularity throughout 2007. Per FeedBurner, my RSS and email subscribers grew from an intrepid fifty (50) base to a year end niche 400. That’s a better growth rate than a certain Solar First stock. Yes, Solar and First were transposed on purpose. I don’t like having Blog Posts show up under a stock on Google Finance just because it is mentioned in passing.

I’ve selected my top 5 posts based on the sound of the headline or actual content as criteria. In 2007, I grew bored trying to get a Solar or Photovoltaic into a post headline just to game the search engines. Although I still use these keywords, I enjoy crafting the best unique, original headline for each post. But I am never afraid to reuse (overuse?) headline phrases to create a new series.

My Top 5 Posts by Headline:

Honorable mention: AE Polysilicon: Follow the Trichlorosilane

My Top 5 Posts by Content:

Honorable mention: 6N Silicon: Solar Grade Silicon from Ontario

As you can see, I am having trouble picking just five (5) of my favorite posts by either criteria. The new In Search of series became two of my top 5 content favorites after debuting towards the end of 2007.

In Part 2, I will list the Top 5 Most Popular Posts with Blog readers and 5 Trends to Watch in 2008.

I hope your 2008 (two thousand eight) has started great.

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