Kyocera Corporation, a leading manufacturer of solar panels, late last week announced plans to construct a major solar cell manufacturing plant located in Yasu City, Japan, which will become the company’s largest production facility in the country.
Building will commence early next year and be completed by the end of 2009, with view to commence commercial production during early 2010. The commissioning of the new plant will allow the company to more than double its production capacity – from a projected 300 megawatts this year to an estimated 650 megawatts for 2010.
The new plant will focus on the production of Kyocera’s new black back contact cell, which the company states has an 18.5% conversion efficiency. 54 of the 15cm x 15cm polycrystalline silicon solar cell are used in a module and while conventional solar panels utilize reflected light from white back sheet, Kyocera’s module uses a black back sheet, which improves energy conversion efficiency as well as the general appearance of the module.