KUKA to automate solar panel manufacturing plant | Automation.com

KUKA to automate solar panel manufacturing plant

KUKA to automate solar panel manufacturing plant
May 11, 2010 - GlobalWatt has chosen KUKA Systems to be its supplier/equipment partner for the world’s first greenfield liquid encapsulant solar panel module line to be installed in Saginaw, MI. This advanced module manufacturing line will be staged to a total of 250 megawatts of annual production capacity. The initial semi-automated line is estimated to cost under $10M and will be operational by November 2010 with production to begin in the first quarter of 2011.

“We have evaluated a series of equipment suppliers for months and have committed to KUKA Systems to form a partnership which we believe will meet our needs over the next five years. They have significant experience in advanced encapsulant technology, and being local ensures the timely support for our manufacturing needs,” said Moji Zahedi, Vice President of Operations for

“We are pleased to partner with GlobalWatt to meet the industry’s need for modules with enhanced efficiency, increased reliability and longer lifespan. These advanced modules are critical for specialty market segments,” said Robert Giaier, Vice President for KUKA Systems Corp. North America.

“GlobalWatt is fortunate to have a quality and experienced supplier like KUKA Systems in Michigan. Both companies working together can meet the growing energy demands for high end solar modules to build a mutually beneficial relationship. Our business is to integrate high performance photovoltaic modules for applications in defense, emergency power, distributed utility, telecommunications and other markets,” remarks Sanjeev Chitre, CEO of GlobalWatt, Inc.

Larry Drake, CEO of KUKA Systems states: “We welcome GlobalWatt to Michigan, joining us in forming part of the state’s emerging Solar Valley. We look forward to our partnership with them in developing the world’s first greenfield liquid silicone encapsulation module line and creating employment in their Saginaw facility. We have the resources to meet the current and future solar manufacturing needs of GlobalWatt.”

About GlobalWatt:
GlobalWatt, Inc. is a Silicon Valley solar technology firm building the manufacturing facility in Saginaw, Michigan. GlobalWatt’s business is to manufacture the most advanced solar modules and integrate them into photovoltaic power systems to meet the rapidly growing renewable energy requirements for defense, emergency power, rural electrification and other specialty applications. GlobalWatt’s solar modules will contain in excess of ninety percent U.S. content.

About KUKA Systems:
KUKA Systems Corp North America, a Michigan-based company, is part of the KUKA Systems Group, a leading global supplier of flexible automation systems for the Automotive, Aerospace, Energy and Industrial Solutions sectors. Some 3,500 employees worldwide work on ideas, concepts and solutions for automated production and the provision of products and services for virtually all tasks in the industrial processing of metallic and non-metallic materials. The Energy Division offers engineering services, automated production modules and complete turnkey production lines for the photovoltaic, solar thermal and wind energy sectors.
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