Midsummer to begin production of thin film cells in southern Italy after summer

Midsummer fab in Bari, Italy

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From pv magazine Italy

Swedish company Midsummer expects to start operations at its Italian factory in Puglia after the summer. When fully operational, the factory is expected to produce 50 MW a year of thin film photovoltaic cells.

The new fab is supported by Invitalia, Italy's national agency for inward investment and economic development.

“We received the Invitalia inspectors at the end of April,” said Erik Olsson, Midsummer's head of corporate development, speaking to pv magazine Italy at Intersolar. “The second contribution will be used to hire people in Bari. We are also certifying production. We started at the beginning of the year and it usually takes six months. We will start production after the summer.”

Invitalia has now provided Midsummer with a second grant of approximately SEK 91 million ($8.6 million) for a total of more than $22 million in funding for the start of production at what will be “Europe's largest thin-film solar cell manufacturing plant.”

Midsummer fab in Bari, Italy
Midsummer's fab in Bari

Image: Midsummer

“All manufacturing equipment is now installed on site and the factory is ready to scale production as sales increase and factory and product certifications are completed,” the company said in a statement.

In addition to the new fab, currently the company's largest facility, Midsummer has an active plant in Sweden and a second under construction in the country.

“We have a capacity of 5 MW in Sweden, but an actual production of around 2 MW,” Olsson said during Intersolar in Munich last week. “We produce three different products. The Bari plant will allow us to produce 6 meter long modules, 50% more than what we can do now in Sweden. This is important because the demand for longer modules is increasing.”

The products of the Bari plant will satisfy not only the Italian market, but above all France and Spain, the most important markets for the Swedish company.

“We have done almost only residential, but the demand for our products is increasingly coming from the C&I segment,” Olsson told pv magazine Italy. “That's also why the dimensions for modules in demand are changing.”

The company says it expects prices below €1 per watt, adding that the final price depends on the quantity of orders.

The next Swedish factory will have a capacity four times that of the Bari plant.

“Earlier this year we obtained the European Innovation Fund grant for our second factory in Sweden,” Olsson said. “We applied in February 2023 and signed the grant agreement in December 2023. This is 200 MW, which will be operational in spring 2026.”

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