Special Economic Zone Lotus, which is an industrial district of Russia’s Astrakhan region, and Russian newly established company NPO Monocrystal have signed a framework agreement for the construction of a vertically-integrated monocrystalline PV module manufacturing facility.
The new factory is planned to be built at a cost of around 1.5 billion RUB (around $26.5 million) and to be located at the Special Economic Zone Lotus, while the start of commercial operations is scheduled for 2021.
The general director of NPO Monocrystal, Alexander Rebrov claims that the factory will be able to produce modules at lower costs compared to Chinese and European solar manufacturers. “The uniqueness of our technology lies in the fact that we carry out the entire production cycle, from growing the crystals themselves to the finished panel,” Rebrov stressed without providing further details.
The project is expected to be implemented over several phases. As a first stage, the industrial complex will be set up, while the following stage will see the production of monocrystalline silicon. The module manufacturing is scheduled as the final stage.
Modules produced at the facility will be distributed in Russia and other CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries, such as Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.
*the article was amended on February 21, as in a previous version of the article we said NPO Monocrystal was based in Stavropol city, Stavropol region. NPO Monocrystal, instead, is based in Astrakhan region, and it has no connection with Stavropol-based Monocrystal, which provides, among other things, silver pastes to the PV industry.