Oklahoma, United States [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] Anticipating a significant long-term increase in demand for consumer-friendly solar cell technology for homes, businesses and large-scale solar farms, Belgium-based Umicore, is expanding its U.S. germanium production operations by building a US $51 million, 40,000-square-foot germanium production plant in Quapaw, Oklahoma.
After a nationwide search, Umicore’s site selection committee chose Quapaw, a tiny town in the northeastern corner of Oklahoma, as the site for its germanium wafer plant.
In addition to a close proximity to the end user, the deciding factors included access to the labor base in the Lamar Labor Basin, which includes parts of southwest Missouri, southeast Kansas and northeast Oklahoma, and offers more than 51,000 available, qualified workers within a 45-minute commute.
Construction on the germanium wafer plant is nearing completion, with production expected to begin in the spring. The Umicore Group is a global operation with nearly 15,000 employees, and approx. $12.5 billion in annual revenue.