New Mexico, United States [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson announced that Signet Solar will build the company’s first North American solar panel production facility in Belen, New Mexico. The first phase of the plant will bring 200 high-wage jobs to the state and is scheduled to begin operations in 2010. Signet’s long-term plans call for expansion and the creation of a total of 600 jobs.
“As Governor, I’ve been dedicated to making New Mexico a national leader of renewable energy and the creation of green jobs,” Richardson said. “At a time of economic uncertainty, this project will create hundreds of jobs and reaffirm New Mexico as a clean energy state and major player in our nation’s effort build a new clean energy economy.”
The Signet facility will produce large area thin-film silicon photovoltaic modules for commercial rooftop and ground mounted solar power systems. The first phase of the plant will have an annual production capacity of 65 megawatts (MW). Long-term plans call to increase production capacity to 300 MW per year with a 600,000 square foot production facility.
“New Mexico was an obvious starting point for Signet Solar’s expansion into the growing US renewable energy market,” said Rajeeva Lahri, Signet Solar’s Co-Founder and CEO. “Under Governor Richardson’s leadership, New Mexico has demonstrated commitment to renewable energy through public-private partnerships, leveraging its skilled workforce and world class research institutions.”
RenewableEnergyWorld.com’s Stephen Lacey talked with Dr. Keshav Prasad, vice president of business development for Signet Solar about the Applied Materials’ SunFab line it uses for production and the company’s growth plans at Solar Power International in October.