Solar

PowerLight Starts Around-Clock Production of Panels

Increased demand for solar panels in California has prompted PowerLight Corp to begin round-the-clock production of its PowerGuard(R) solar roof tiles.

BERKELEY, California, US, 2001-12-31 [SolarAccess.com] “Demand for solar power is growing at a phenomenal rate,” says founder and CEO Tom Dinwoodie. “We are completing our fifth year of annually doubling growth.” “Customers want clean and reliable power for their facilities,” and he estimates that the California company has created several hundred new jobs in manufacturing and related construction industries. “For every new job in our factory, many more are created in the field where the systems are installed.” PowerLight has made substantial investments in plant equipment and technology, some of which has been co-funded by the California Energy Commission and the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The company’s factory in Berkeley will increase its annual manufacturing capacity to 20 megawatts by March, which is the energy equivalent of two million barrels of oil over a 25-year operating life. Dinwoodie made his comments at the company’s ten-year anniversary celebration. PowerLight markets solar electric products to large commercial and government customers, with a focus on its flagship PowerGuard lightweight PV roofing assembly that generates electricity while insulating and protecting the roof from weather and UV radiation. Recent customers include the National Park Service in Yosemite and Alameda County. “This project was entirely justifiable on economic merits alone,” says T. J. Rodgers, president and CEO of Cypress Semiconductor, an integrated circuits manufacturer, on that company’s new 335 kW PowerGuard system. “On-site solar PV addresses our nation’s energy security by reducing our dependence on foreign energy sources and insulates us from future price volatility.”