Grid Scale, Solar, Storage

PV Manufacturing Shifts to Mexico

As the worldwide market for solar technology flexes according to market conditions, another large company has shifted manufacturing of solar cells to North America.

Monterrey, Mexico – December 11, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd. has announced it will begin production of HIT (Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-layer) photovoltaic modules at Sanyo Energy S.A. de C.V.’s Monterrey, Mexico plant beginning in the summer of 2003. According to the company, Japan’s domestic solar power market is progressing steadily as a result of subsidies provided by the Japanese government for household solar energy generating systems. Overseas markets for solar power such as North America and Europe are growing steadily and anticipate continued rapid expansion for these markets in the future. Sanyo has not only increased sales of its solar power generating systems in Japan’s domestic market but has also moved forward aggressively in expanding overseas sales, said the company. In moving ahead with expansion of photovoltaic module sales in North America, Sanyo will produce photovoltaic modules at Sanyo Energy (Mexico) with SANYO Energy (USA) in charge of sales. This will allow the company to strengthen its link between the customer and the manufacturing base further improving response time speed to meet customer needs. Sanyo Energy (USA), where the company previously manufactured and sold rechargeable batteries, will now be able to utilize this sales infrastructure for photovoltaic modules. Favorable cost merits for distribution and shipment to both America’s west and east coasts, local procurement of parts and materials and inexpensive labor costs in comparison with such costs in the United States, make production at SANYO Energy S.A. de C.V. factory in Monterrey an ideal location. Though Sanyo entered the North American market after other photovoltaic modules manufacturers, the SANYO HIT photovoltaic module with a cell energy conversion rate of 18.5 percent has increased market share in the high-end product market, according to the company. Sanyo’s HIT photovoltaic module has been chosen to provide 482 kW worth of solar power for the solar system’s total of 675 kW to be installed on the Moscone Center, located in San Francisco, California. This Solar power generation system is the first stage of the reusable energy project to be implemented by the city of San Francisco.