Taiwan’s biggest PV module manufacturing fab inaugurated

Taiwan Solar Energy Corp (TSEC Corp.) inaugurated Taiwan’s biggest solar PV module manufacturing facility on April 30, while the first modules came off the production line on May 1, a spokesperson for the company tells pv magazine.

Overall, the facility, located in Taching Industiral Zone in Pingtung County, southern Taiwan, will be built across two phases. The first building for the first 1 GW phase, and a 500 MW manufacturing line, have already been completed. A second 500 MW line will be added within one year, said the spokesperson.

Overall, TSEC aims to add another 1 GW of capacity by 2020, on the other half of the 14,342 ping plot (one ping equals 36 square feet). A total of US$50 million has been invested in the project.

The spokesperson adds that the facility will manufacture mainstream grid-tied modules, including 60 and 72-cell modules. Currently, 60 cell mono PERC modules (300/305W) are the company’s most popular product, they continued.

Regarding where the modules will go, they said, “Due to back lot orders from domestic demand, we will mainly ship to domestic projects in 2018. And if there is any demand from abroad, we will gradually enlarge the export since we have certifications to sell abroad without problems.”

In November 2016, TSEC announced it was planning to build a 1 GW manufacturing facility, in addition to increasing its annual solar cell manufacturing capacity by 450 MW. At the time, it had an annual cell manufacturing capacity of 1.5 GW.

The ramp up is in response to the Taiwanese Government’s target to reach 20% of total power generated by renewable sources by 2025, which includes the ambitious goal of having 20 GW of installed solar PV by this date.

According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Taiwan added just 400 MW of PV in 2017, up from 251 MW in 2016. The International Renewable Energy Agency, meanwhile, estimates that overall installed renewable energy capacity in the country  as of the end of 2017 is 4.9 GW, of which just 1.7 GW comprises solar PV.