Since First Solar, the world’s leader in CdTe thin-film solar PV modules, launched EPC business in 2008, the company has installed 6GW of capacity around the world. The company keeps its strong momentum by installing averagely 30~40MW of capacity a week to complete its 2GW worldwide portfolio.
Partnerships with strategic customers have enabled First Solar to continually lower the cost of utility-scale solar generation, noted Alan Stringer, First Solar’s Vice President of Global Project Management and Construction Services. As the global installation capacity has surpassed 6GW, First Solar is now offering services with better Balance of Systems while maintaining the required quality.
The first solar project built by First Solar’s EPC business was 2008’s 10MW El Dorado Solar Project in Nevada, consisting of 220,000 First Solar PV modules, and taking nearly two years from groundbreaking to commissioning. In early 2015, First Solar completed construction of the 550MWac Desert Sunlight Solar Project and the 550MWac Topaz Solar Farms, each utilizing more than 8 million modules and built in about the same amount of time it took to construct El Dorado.
As the world’s leader of CdTe product, First Solar again broke the conversion efficiency by achieving 22.1% efficiency. The record has been certificated at the Newport Corporation’s Technology and Applications Center (TAC) PV Lab. The record has also documented in the U.S. Department of Energy’s NREL “Best Research Cell Efficiencies” reference chart.
The record-setting research cell was constructed at the company’s Perrysburg, Ohio manufacturing factory and Research & Development Center using processes and materials suitable for commercial-scale manufacturing.
In addition to the ultra-high efficient CdTe product, First Solar manufactures commercialized PV modules with efficiency up to 16.4% in 4Q15. The efficiency makes First Solar’s product a competitor to multi C-si PV modules.