Another Green Fail: German solar maker insolvent

Russ Steele

Our local left often cite the alternative energy success in Germany.  How a reality check.

Berlin-based solar panel manufacturer Solon filed for insolvency, another sign of how brutal price competition is shrinking the industry.

Solon yesterday said it was unsuccessful in restructuring its loans with banks. It will now seek to restructure those loans for three of its subsidiaries through insolvency proceedings.

The move follows the company’s decision earlier this year to close its Tucson, Arizona manufacturing operation.

Read the rest HERE.

 

 

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About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

One Response to Another Green Fail: German solar maker insolvent

  1. sean2829 says:

    A lot of companies in emerging markets go in and out of business in the exploitation of new technologies. Weeding out of the higher cost producers is to be expected. But something even more fundamental is afoot. According to an article in Bloomberg today, some solar technologies are being abandonded, specifically CIGS or copper-indium-gallium-selenide, because it can’t produce a sufficienly efficient panel. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-12-14/first-solar-abandons-holy-grail-technology-that-sank-solyndra.html
    This makes perfect sense since the cost of polysilicon cells have gotten so low that they represent only 1/4 to 1/3 the capital cost of solar installations. So even though CIGS cells can potentially be produced for less cost than polysilicon, the much higher costs of installation are going to demand that the most effecient be used which are the poly silicon based systems. This is going to be a big problem for solar manufactures in California. Polysilicon solar cells require a tremendous amount of energy to manufacture. If the other thin film technologies drop by the wayside, then remaining competative in solar means finding the cheapest power. Since AB32 insures that electricity will be more expensive in California than any other place in the continental US, solar cell manufacturing (and likely the rest of the industry) will have to be done somewhere else.

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