Abound Solar Secures $510 Million Funding to Commercialize Solar Panels
Abound Solar to commercialize Cadmium-Telluride thin-film solar panels using $400 million DOE loan guarantee and $110 million equity financing.
Abound Solar has secured $510 million to enable the company to commercialize their thin-film solar panels, intended for large scale commercial and utility solar power projects. The funds came from a combination of a $400 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and $110 million in equity financing from private investors, bringing Abound Solar's equity financing to $260 million since the company's inception in 2007.
The financing will allow Abound Solar to implement an innovative manufacturing technology for Cadmium-Telluride solar panels in their existing facility in Colorado and at a facility they are currently constructing in Indiana. At full capacity, Abound Solar expects to produce 840 MW of thin-film solar panels each year.
Abound Solar estimates their manufacturing expansion will create 1,200 new ongoing jobs in manufacturing and operations of their thin-film solar panels - an estimated 200 jobs in Colorado and 1,000 jobs in Indiana.
The expansion will also create hundreds of construction jobs and an estimated 1,600 ongoing supply chain jobs in Midwestern states including Wisconsin, Minnesota, Tennessee, and Ohio.
Abound Solar plans to manufacture photovoltaic solar panels using an innovative process in which thin films of Cadmium-Telluride are deposited onto glass panels. The company believes their thin-film solar panel manufacturing technology offers numerous improvements over existing manufacturing methods and reduces production costs.
Abound Solar manufactures the Cadmium-Telluride solar panels with a 12-13 percent efficiency at less than $1 per watt, significantly cheaper than the manufacturing cost of silicon solar panels.
In addition, the production and installation of Abound Solar's thin-film solar panels produces significantly less greenhouse gas emissions than crystalline silicon panels, according to the company.
Abound Solar's current competitors include First Solar, who manufactures Cadmium-Telluride solar panels at the industry's lowest cost of 76 cents per watt, and GE, who plans to manufacture their own Cadmium-Telluride thin-film solar panels.