On October 13, General Electric (GE) announced that it will build a new thin-film photovoltaic (PV) solar panel manufacturing facility in Aurora, Colorado. The plant will produce highly efficient, low-cost panels that are based on innovative technology originally developed at DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
GE expects that the plant will produce enough solar panels annually to provide electricity to 80,000 homes and that the project will create 355 jobs in Colorado over the next three to five years. The company expects that the factory's manufacturing lines will be producing panels beginning next year and that the panels will be available for sale starting in 2013.
As noted in an earlier post, the panels to be produced at the plant are based on cadmium telluride thin-film PV technology initially developed by a team of researchers at NREL, and later commercialized by Colorado start-up PrimeStar Solar. GE announced its outright acquisition of PrimeStar, along with plans to invest $600 million around the company’s technology—plans that now officially include the plant in Aurora. See the Energy Blog post .