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Polysilicon Giant GCL Becomes Even Bigger With Acquisition of Bankrupt SunEdison’s Polysilicon Assets

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GCL which is the world’s largest producer of polysilicon with a capacity of more than 70,000 tons per year is set to become even bigger after it buys SunEdison’s polysilicon plant and technology. GCL will also receive SunEdison’s proprietary wafer technology which it can develop further. GCL also owns 30% of the world’s wafer capacity for solar panels.

Note GCL has been coming under pressure from fellow Chinese solar wafer producer Longi which has developed a low cost mono wafer technology. This is pressurizing prices for the multi wafers that GCL produces for most of the world’s large solar panel players. Wafer prices have sunk like a stone in recent times going down to as low as 13-14 cents/watt, which is barely above the cost of production.


GCL Poly needs to improve the efficiency of its wafer technology in order to remain competitive with the Longi wafers. It has started to employ black silicon and diamond wafers saws to get the edge back. The Solacix technology of direct wafering adds another option for GCL to lower costs and improve efficiency of its wafer technology.

Coming back to polysilicon, GCL is gong to get access to SunEdison’s FBR technology for making poly. This method has a lower production cost but it has been very difficult to master. Only REC besides SunEdison has managed to produce poly at a competitive price using the FBR technology. All other major producers such as Wacker, OCI uses the mainstream Siemens technology. Efforts by GCL in the past to use FBR technology to make poly has come a cropper. SunEdison’s technology plus its Pasadena  plant at $150 million is a bargain for GCL. Besides these assets, GCL will also get SunEdison’s half constructed Korean plant in a JV with Samsung. This plant can add another 10000 tons of poly capacity for GCL.


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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