Solar cell manufacturer raises production by 300% to cater for domestic demand

Australia’s only solar cell manufacturer is increasing production at its Sydney Olympic Park plant due to skyrocketing demand from Australian households.

SilexSolar will increase production by a whopping 300% this year, as local families prepare for rising electricity prices and a possible carbon tax.

SilexSolar recently introduced a new factory-direct, online service for retailers of photovoltaic (PV) panels.

According to the company, the online ordering system helped to minimise costs for  energy-conscious consumers and helped the business maintain a competitive edge against imported solar modules.

“People are increasingly conscious that they will need to address energy prices literally in their own backyard,” S eares said. “We recently installed a new assembly robot and one of the largest laminators in the Southern Hemisphere, which means we are well equipped to handle this growth in throughput — it is tremendously exciting,” said SilexSolar general manager, Rod Seares. 

“As Australia’s only solar cell manufacturer, we are delighted both to see demand growing for our solar modules and to continue our drive towards lower production costs.”

SilexSolar employs over 100 people at Olympic Park, where production was increased to 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week some months ago in anticipation of rising demand. 

“Expanding employment opportunities at Australia’s only solar cell facility is a privilege,” Seares said. 

“Hundreds of jobs were nearly lost when the former owners closed the plant down in 2008. Not only did we save the facility, we have expanded and improved the infrastructure and are working on new models with even greater efficiency. We are just getting started.”

Whilst the Australian solar market has seen growth of up to 400% in recent years, it remains extremely volatile due to its reliance on State and Federal support, Seares claims.

Another solar cell manufacturer called Eco-Kinetics will open a new manufacturing facility on the Gold Coast in the coming months to cater for growing demand in the sector. The firm claims the premises will create 244 full-time jobs by 2015.

THe Australian government has noticed the trend, and has entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with German researchers to jointly-develop solar products.

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