CNBM celebrated the ‘first module out’ at its factory earlier this week. According to Avancis, the current factory has a 55,000 square meter footprint, and an annual capacity of 300 MW of CIGS modules.
The company, however, states that this is just the first unit of a much larger facility, and that eventually 1.5 GW of CIGS production will be brought online at the site, taking up 270,000 square meters.
CNBM states that it has broken ground on three further gigawatt-scale CIGS facilities over the past two years, and that modules produced at these facilities will primarily serve the Chinese PV market.
“China has ambitious solar energy programs. The demand for solar energy in the country is huge,” explains Avancis CEO Oliver Just.
“With the start of production, we will have the opportunity to market our high quality thin-film technology on site for the largest photovoltaic market. Especially in projects where quality and aesthetics are mission-critical factors, our glass-glass modules occupy a technological top position.”
CNBM is the first of several organizations to bring large-scale CIGS production online in China. Others working on the technology include Hanergy and a partnership between Chinese Utility Shanghai Electric and the Shenhua Group.
Speaking to pv magazine earlier this week, Stefan Rinck, CEO of Singulus, which has supplied its CIGS production equipment to CNBM and other CIGS module manufacturers, says that the company is expecting a prolonged investment for CIGS technology, with as much as 6 GW of production capacity to potentially come online in China alone.