The rapid increase in solar cell production in 2004, thanks to expanding subsidies worldwide and rising Integrated Circuit (IC) unit volumes triggered a polysilicon shortage forcing solar manufacturers to pay higher prices to secure silicon supply in 2005. Going into 2007, the industry can expect more of the same.

"We estimate that solar manufacturers met 80 percent to 90 percent of its 2005 production plans due to polysilicon stockpiles from 2001/2002, resulting in a 30 percent solar industry growth over 2004 to 1656 MW in 2005. But the picture is bleak for 2006 given that stockpiles are depleted..." -- Jesse W. Pichel and Ming Yang, Piper Jaffray & Co., Research Analysts