Heliosphera to Open 150-MW Thin-film Manufacturing Plant in Philadelphia

Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell announced that a thin-film solar panel producer will open a manufacturing facility in Philadelphia’s Navy Yard, creating 400 jobs and leveraging hundreds of millions of dollars of private investment. The Governor said the planned project by Heliosphera US will bolster the state and city’s reputation as an emerging leader in solar technology and development.

Heliopsphera Holding SA, an affiliate company of Heliosphera US, recently began operating a new 60-megawatt (MW) production facility in Peloponnesus, Greece. Production in that plant began in September 2009.

“This investment will allow the company to address what we believe will be a largest solar market in the world. We would like to thank Governor Rendell and the commonwealth for their strong support in developing this project,” said Dr. Panos Ninios, president of Heliosphera US.

Pennsylvania provided the company with a US $49 million funding offer, coordinated through the Governor’s Action Team, consisting of a variety of grants and loans. Governor Rendell said that Pennsylvania could attract even more renewable energy projects by expanding the state’s alternative energy portfolio standards, which was first enacted in 2004 and led to the state’s rapid growth in the industry.

He also urged the legislators to pass House Bill 80, which would increase the share of energy electric companies must obtain from solar photovoltaic sources to 3 percent by 2026. The requirement is now 0.5 percent by 2020.

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