First Solar to invest up to $1.2B to scale production
First Solar says that it plans to invest up to USD 1.2 billion in scaling production of American-made photovoltaic (PV) solar modules. The company expects to have over 3,000 direct employees in four states.
With the investment, First Solar will expand its ability to produce American-made solar modules for the US solar market to over 10 GWDC by 2025.
As part of its push to scale US production of solar modules, the company intends to build its fourth, fully vertically integrated domestic factory, with an annual capacity of 3.5 GWDC, in the US Southeast. First Solar says in a press release that it expects to invest up to USD 1 billion in the new factory – expected to start operations in 2025.
Additionally, the company says it will invest USD 185 million in upgrading and expanding its Northwest Ohio manufacturing footprint by 0.9 GWDC.
As part of its plans, First Solar will invest in expanding the capacity of its two operating facilities in Perrysburg and Lake Township, Ohio, by 0.6 GWDC to 3.6 GWDC of annual Series 6 module capacity. The company will also expand its third Ohio factory, expected to be commissioned in the first half of 2023, to 3.5 GWDC of annual Series 7 module capacity. The expansion will increase First Solar’s total investment in its Ohio manufacturing facilities to over USD 3 billion, with a cumulative annual production capacity of over 7 GWDC by 2025.
First Solar says that it estimates that these new investments will add at least 850 new manufacturing jobs, taking its total number of direct jobs in the US to over 3,000 people in four states by 2025.