Consequently, the facility will now employ 107 people and operate on a 24 hour basis. Additionally, annual capacity now sits at around 50 megawatts (MW), or 15,000 photovoltaic modules a month.
Looking ahead, Steven Chan, president of Suntech America says the company is aiming to employ 150 people by the end of 2011, and expand production capacity to 120 MW "within the next few years".
The 117,000 square foot manufacturing facility features automated manufacturing and product testing equipment, and currently produces Suntech’s 280W solar panels for commercial and utility-scale electricity generation.
Mike Starr, Suntech’s Arizona production manager commented: "With growing demand for our U.S.-manufactured panels, we’re excited to increase our production capacity and drive growth in Arizona’s solar industry."