Qcells announces new US solar encapsulant factory


From pv magazine USA

Hanwha Qcells America has revealed that its solar supplier, Hanwha Advanced Materials Georgia (HAGA), will build a new advanced materials manufacturing facility in Bartow County, Georgia.

HAGA will supply Qcells with encapsulant film ethyl vinyl acetate (EVA), which is the front “foil” on solar modules sandwiching the cells against the backsheet and front glass. There were shortages of EVA in 2022, and by supplying its own EVA foil, Qcells can ensure a steady supply of the material. Qcells said that HAGA will be the only company manufacturing solar EVA in the United States.

HAGA's $147 million investment is expected to create more than 160 full-time jobs, including engineers, line operators with the facility starting production in June 2024.  The facility is critical to supporting Qcells’ plans to develop a fully integrated US solar supply chain.

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“The products we make are an important piece of the clean energy supply chain puzzle, and we are excited to meet this need,” said Inhwan Kim, chief executive officer of Hanwha Advanced Materials.Building our cutting-edge, advanced materials in Georgia will not only create new careers in solar but help bring more affordable, reliable clean energy to customers across the country.”

The announcement comes just two months after Qcells announced plans to invest a historic $2.5 billion in the expansion of its operations, in order to set up a fully integrated solar supply chain production base in Georgia. In what is considered the largest investment in US solar history, the South Korean company – a subsidiary of Hanwha Solutions – is the first company to establish a fully integrated, silicon-based solar supply chain in the United States.

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