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Chinese Solar Thin Film Giant Hanergy plans 10 GW of mixed Thin Film Capacity

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Hanergy to buildĀ 10 GW of mixed Thin Film Capacity

Chinese solar giant Hanergy plans to build 10 GW of thin film solar capacity with a 52.5% and 47.5% mix of CIGs and a-Si capacity. Hanergy has managed to buy some excellent thin film technology from Miasole, Global Energy and Solibro for bargain basement prices in the last few years. The massive silicon solar panel glut in the last couple of years has bankrupted hundreds of firms. The thin film startups were amongst the worst hit as these companies needed large amounts of capital to improve their technology and scale their business. With even the biggest solar companies making losses, these startups had no chance and were sold for pennies to the dollar to Asian companies. Amongst thin film players only First Solar and Solar Frontier are bankable Tier 1 companies left. Others have either completely shut down (Abound Solar, Solyndra etc.) or have been sold.

Chinese solar giant Hanergy has been using the industry trough to solidify its technology and scale by buying some of the best CIGs technology for very cheap prices. The company wants to now use the technology to build massive solar capacity. The company which used to earlier build a-Si panels using equipment from its Apollo subsidiary plants will now build more than 5 GW of CIGs capacity. The company is already planning to build a thin film factory in Brazil which holds tremendous potential due to high electricity prices and large number of sunny days.

It remains to be seen whether Hanergy can be successful in this business. On the plus side it has the backing of the Chinese government and banks. On the negative side, Chinese firms are not too good at R&D and technology development. They are good at manufacturing and processes, not so much at creating or improving technology. There are also other large Chinese solar companies such as Goldpoly, Hareon, Yingli, Trina and others who are using the same strengths to capture large chunks of the huge global solar market. We would be watching Hanergy closely to see if the company can create the first big Chinese thin film solar company. Note thin film solar technology is generally considered to have more long term potential than crystalline silicon technology. Miasole had managed to build solar panels with more than 13% efficiency and Stion claims to be building high efficiency CIGs panels as well.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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