Continued expansion demonstrates commitment to photovoltaic customers worldwide
(6 September 2010). The first phase of the Luvata SunwireTM expansion spanning three continents is now in full swing. This phase of the Sunwire branded photovoltaic wire evolution will culminate with three dedicated Sunwire manufacturing facilities including Pori, Finland, Pasir Gudang, Malaysia and finally Appleton, Wisconsin USA. This ongoing expansion supports Luvata’s strategy to grow specialty products and strengthen its market presence in high-growth regions.
“With our Pori expansion complete and the construction of our Pasir Gudang expansion well underway, Luvata now announces a 3000 square metre facility dedicated to the manufacture of Sunwire in Appleton, Wisconsin, concluding Phase One of Luvata’s €20 million investment decided in early 2008,” states Jussi Helavirta, Executive Vice-President with Luvata.
“This investment has enabled us to develop the latest annealing and plating technology in Sunwire products as well as extra soft Sunwire, which reduces cell breakages and reduces electrical resistance in modules. These capabilities have proven successful in the market place and very shortly we will have three dedicated Sunwire facilities on three continents, expanding our capacity to deliver this high demand product.”
Luvata’s unit in Pasir Gudang serves the Asian PV market, where more and more of the new, large photovoltaic module production facilities are being established. Pori has a dual role in Luvata’s photovoltaic strategy as the manufacturing unit supplying the European market and also as the Centre of Excellence for Luvata’s photovoltaic business with the focus on business and technology development. The added capacity in Appleton, Wisconsin will expand on the manufacturing expertise gained in Malaysia and Finland, while putting Luvata closer to the growing North American PV industry.
With three dedicated Sunwire manufacturing facilities on three continents, Luvata provides its customers with the advantage of short lead times and simplified start-up capabilities. “We believe this close proximity to our customers along with the consistent quality and performance of our Sunwire, will provide a level of responsiveness and flexibility customers have come to expect from the Luvata Group,” indicates Helavirta.
According to the estimations from the European Photovoltaic Industry Association the global photovoltaic module business is expected to grow globally approximately 25-35 % year-on-year to 2014. The investment will substantially increase its Sunwire volume for the coming years to meet the increase in market demand. The decision approved as Phase One by Luvata’s Board of Directors is part of Luvata’s long-term photovoltaic business plan enabling it to be one of the leading global companies in this field.
Luvata is the leading international metals supplier of solutions, services, components and materials for manufacturing and construction. Luvata’s solutions are used in industries such as renewable energy, power generation, architecture, automotive, transport, medicine, air-conditioning, industrial refrigeration, consumer products and construction. The company’s continued success is attributed to its longevity, technological excellence and strategy of building partnerships beyond metals. Employing over 7,000 staff in 18 countries, Luvata works in partnership with customers such as Siemens, Toyota, CERN, Shaaz, and DWD International.