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Leading supplier of proven thin-film silicon PV technology moves ahead

  • Oerlikon Solar's Asian Hub in Singapore to open in 2008
  • Several customer factories currently in ramp-up process.
  • Oerlikon has established benchmark for rapid customer ramp-up and product certification (equipment order date to production start date)
  • Over 300'000 solar modules already produced with installed propriety tools
  • Oerlikon has consistently met installation and efficiency targets
  • On-track to reach grid parity by 2010

Truebbach/Munich, Photovoltaic Technology Show, April 3, 2008. - Oerlikon Solar, the pioneering supplier of proven thin-film silicon PV solutions is rapidly expanding its global footprint. With multiple customers already in commercial production, several more in the ramp up phase and over 300'000 solar modules manufactured, Oerlikon is continuing its strong performance in the fast-growing thin film PV equipment market. In terms of experience and technology the company is the clear leader in the turnkey thin-film silicon PV market. " Oerlikon Solar is committed to fulfilling our customers needs and maintaining our position as the leading provider of proven turnkey thin film manufacturing solutions. Our capacity expansion and our global reach will enable us to serve our customers in the dynamic and fast-growing market environment. We will also continue to recruit highly skilled individuals to join our solar team." states Jeannine Sargent, CEO Oerlikon Solar.

The solar industry has developed into one of the fastest growing global energy markets. As the leading provider of proven thin-film PV silicon solar solutions, Oerlikon Solar is playing a major role in driving the growth in this market segment. The company's sales have surpassed the ambitious targets announced when the Oerlikon Solar business was established, with over CHF 300 million in sales in 2007, and a forecast for more than CHF 700 million in 2008, as world energy markets increasingly turn to clean solar energy to meet growing energy demands.

Sustainable development

The creation of a solar segment within the Oerlikon Group in late 2007, established the right organizational environment to meet the vast demands of the rapidly growing solar market. With the solar industry representing a multibillion CHF business opportunity, the company felt it vital to expand its current solar operations and investments worldwide. 
A new Asian Hub in Singapore will open within the second half of 2008 and help Oerlikon Solar boost its presence and proximity to customers in Asia, while continuing to expand production, development and support for its leading thin-film silicon solar energy solutions.

Oerlikon Solar announced doubling of its production capacity at its plant in Truebbach (Switzerland) and has established a full pilot line as an integral part of its R&D and process module development unit. This new pilot line allows Oerlikon to accelerate R&D and train customer engineers under real world environment.

Intellectual Property Leadership

Oerlikon Solar has strong intellectual property protection for its technology portfolio. The company owns over 35 patent families covering the systems and the process side of our thin-film module and production technologies. No other manufacturer of solar module production equipment worldwide can match Oerlikon's state-of-the art exclusive micromorph technology.

Micromorph Tandem - the next generation

Having already the market lead in thin film amorphous, Oerlikon Solar launched its new Micromorph Tandem cell solution in September 2007. This latest stage of development has significantly higher efficiencies than its amorphous predecessor and will have a double digit conversion rate by 2010, extending the technology advantage even more. Micromorph Tandem is an important element for reducing the production costs of solar energy and to reach grid parity in the short term. This makes the environmentally friendly technology an economical alternative to conventional means of energy production. The clear goal is to achieve grid parity by 2010.

Customers Testimonials

Customers around the globe consider Oerlikon Solar the main driver and clear market leader of thin-film PV technology and therefore rely on its proven turnkey solutions.

"With Oerlikon's worldwide leading technology, we are sure of gaining an important market share in the fast-growing European thin-film photovoltaic market", says Dr. Paolo Campinoti, CEO of Pramac Group (Italy).

"Oerlikon Solar is a leading company of proven turnkey solutions for thin-film modules. Their advanced technology will help us gain market share in the fast growing solar market", says Panos Ninios, Member of the Board of Next Solar (Greece).

"Oerlikon Solar is in our view the absolute leader in thin-film solar technology and is also currently the only supplier of turnkey production plants for thin-film silicon solar modules", states Bob Wong, Chairman CMC Magnetics.

"There is a rapidly growing demand from our customers for solar modules. This requires innovative and proven technology, turnkey capabilities and customer service that will enable us to increase production as quickly and efficiently as possible," said Dr. Tsai, CEO Auria Solar (Taiwan). "Oerlikon Solar offers the strongest combination of these qualities and has consistently demonstrated that they are not only proven but as well have the capability to deliver systems on time."

About Oerlikon Solar
Oerlikon Solar offers cost-effective, proven turnkey solutions for the mass production of thin-film silicon solar modules. These fully automated, modular end-to-end manufacturing solutions are focused on reducing device cost and maximizing productivity. They are available as modular end-to-end solutions with metrology and upgradeability in throughput and process technology.

Oerlikon Solar has developed a unique and innovative technology based on its leadership in thin-film technology and in close cooperation with its customers. An in-house pilot line allows producing, testing and optimizing the solar modules in full production size.

Headquartered in Truebbach, Switzerland, Oerlikon Solar maintains an R&D lab in Europe, as well as global customer support and training through sales and service centers in the United States, Europe and Asia. Oerlikon Solar's Asian Hub, located in Singapore, is currently being ramped up and will open in the second half of 2008.

For further information, please contact:

Sara Vermeulen-Anastasi

Sara Vermeulen-Anastasi

Head of Group Communications

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