TSMC announces complete solar exit

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PV manufacturing is not for everyone. This was confirmed today with the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited (TSMC) confirming that it will sell its 12% stake in compatriot crystalline silicon cell producer Motech.

After trying its hand at CIGS production for a number of years and purchasing a stake in Motech, TSMC has decided to exit the PV sector entirely. The Taiwanese semiconductor producer will sell 29.16 million (6%) common shares of Motech Industries immediately, with its remaining 6% to be unloaded at a later date.

At one stage TSMC had GW-scale ambitions for CIGS production, having constructed a factory with sufficient space for 2 GW of module production. This never eventuated with the company struggling to overcome low production yields, according to analyst reports. TSMC had licensed the CIGS thin film technology from U.S. producer Stion.

TSMC’s move to now sell its stake in Motech indicates that the company has no further appetite for the solar sector.

TSMC had achieved champion module efficiency of 16.5% in its CIGS production.