Thin-film solar photovoltaic modules manufacturer Hanergy is looking to expand beyond the conventional business of modules manufacturing with the some of its recent acquisitions.
Hanergy Holding Group recently announced that it has acquired Alta Devices Inc, a California-based manufacturer of high-efficiency thin- film solar cells. Alta Devices has developed some of the world’s most efficient solar cells with a conversion efficiency of 30.8%.
The acquisition is interesting in the sense that Alta Devices does not manufacture solar cells or modules specifically for solar power plants, small or large. It manufactures small solar cells for consumers devices, unmanned aerial vehicles, solar-powered sensors, and automotive applications.
While Hanergy is a solar PV modules manufacturer, and has also invested in the development of solar power projects, it has also ventured into building-integrated and building-attached solar PV solutions.
Hanergy manufactures amorphous silicon-based thin-film panels, a technology that ranks lowest among all thin-film solar power technologies in terms of conversion efficiency. Thus the acquisition of Alta Devices makes sense.
Investing in companies outside of China also makes financial sense, as Chinese-made modules attract anti-dumping duties in a number of major solar energy markets, including the US. The company is planning to set up a factory to manufacture solar PV modules in the US, and hopes to start operations by 2015. The company is looking to expand application of solar energy technology beyond the conventional power generation domain.
Both companies’ R&D teams will join forces to further develop Alta Devices’ technology to serve the mobile and wearable tech market with reliable, high-efficiency solar-power solutions and applications, a press release stated.
Over the last few years, Hanergy has acquired Arizona-based Global Solar Energy Inc, Silicon Valley startup MiaSole and Germany’s Q Cells AG. Hanergy is a major renewable energy generator in China with presence in hydro power, solar power and wind energy sectors.
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