6/7/2004 - SunPower Corporation, a Cypress subsidiary, announced that it has delivered the initial lot of its A-300 solar cells from its Philippines manufacturing plant, less than two months after opening the facility. Solar cells from this lot reached 19.9 percent efficiency, a solid achievement for first silicon and close to the industry-best 21.5 percent efficiency of A-300 cells made on SunPower’s Round Rock, Texas pilot line. Volume production is on track for the second half of 2004.
SPML, located near Manila, is the first semiconductor fab in the Philippines and the first large-scale solar cell facility in Southeast Asia. The plant will initially turn out 25 megawatts per year of high-efficiency silicon solar cells to meet the increasing worldwide demand for clean, reliable solar-electric power systems. The SPML building footprint is designed to allow future capacity expansion to more than 100 megawatts.
“Our fast turn on first silicon is attributable to the experience we gained at our line in Texas,” said SunPower CEO Tom Werner. “Although we still have a lot of hard work ahead of us, these achievements position SunPower to ramp production during the second half of 2004, as planned.”
“SPML first silicon marks another milestone in the collaboration between SunPower and Cypress,” said Cypress CEO T.J. Rodgers. “Great products and efficient, high-volume manufacturing are keys to the SunPower value proposition.”
Unlike conventional solar cells, SunPower’s A-300 cell features a unique, rear-contact design that maximizes working cell area, hides unsightly wires and simplifies automated production. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) recently measured an A-300 solar cell at an industry-best 21.5 percent efficiency; competing production cells typically are in the 12- to 15-percent range. The A-300 cell was developed and manufactured in SunPower’s Round Rock, Texas facility, which began operation in January 2003. With a rated efficiency greater than 20 percent, the A-300 can deliver up to 50 percent more kilowatts of clear solar power on a limited roof area and significantly reduce installation cost per kilowatt.
SunPower—a majority-owned subsidiary of Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE: CY)—designs and manufactures high-performance silicon solar cells based on an interdigitated rear-contact design. The company’s initial products were put to use in a variety of high-performance applications, including the NASA-sponsored AeroVironment airplane, “Helios,” that flew to a record altitude of 96,863 feet on August 13, 2001. For more information on SunPower or solar technology, please visit the SunPower website at http://www.sunpowercorp.com.
Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE: CY) is Connecting From Last Mile to First MileTM with high-performance solutions for personal, network access, enterprise, metro switch and core communications-system applications. Cypress ConnectsTM using wireless, wireline, digital and optical transmission standards, including USB, Fibre Channel, SONET/SDH, Gigabit Ethernet and DWDM. Leveraging its process and system-level expertise, Cypress makes industry-leading physical layer devices, framers and network search engines, along with a broad portfolio of high-bandwidth memories, timing technology solutions and reconfigurable mixed-signal arrays. More information about Cypress is accessible online at www.cypress.com.
Cypress is a registered trademark of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. “Connecting from Last Mile to First Mile” and “Cypress Connects” are trademarks of Cypress.
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