Oerlikon solar unit to double capacity, lifts target

Reuters: The solar unit of Swiss technology group Oerlikon said on Friday it would double its production capacity by adding a new plant in Asia and raised its 2008 sales forecast by 17 percent on surging demand. A market leader in supplying machines that make thin-film solar cells, Oerlikon said it would establish a new production facility in Singapore as producers struggle to meet demand for the technology, the company said in a statement.

“We would have at least equal capacity out of Asia as we do in Europe,” said Oerlikon Solar CEO Jeannine Sargent in a phone interview with Reuters. Capacity for 2007 is expected to have hit 300 million francs, said Sargent, with the Singapore addition increasing sales four-fold, or around 1.2 billion francs once the plant becomes operational in the first quarter of 2009.
Record oil prices, concerns about climate change and government incentives to move away from fossil fuels have boosted investment in alternative energy sources, spurring demand for solar panels and lifting sales….


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