Companies

Voltech, NanoPV venture to build solar module plant near Chennai

M. Ramesh Chennai | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on October 30, 2012

The Voltech group of Chennai and the US-based NanoPV have joined hands to put up a 100 MW solar module manufacturing plant near Chennai and a solar park near Tuticorin.

Voltech is a medium-sized group that is into the manufacture of transformers.

Setting up a cell and module manufacturing plant may appear foolhardy at a time when global majors are being toppled by the Chinese companies’ onslaught and the slowdown in the European economy. But NanoPV’s President and CTO, Dr Anna Selvan John, says that the company has unique and patented technology that enables it to be competitive even in this market.

“NanoPV has unique technology based on amorphous and nano-crystalline silicon and proprietary light-trapping and ‘transparent conductive light-trapping oxide’ technologies,” says the company’s Web site. Because of this, compared with conventional solar cells, NanoPV’s cell manufacturing involves one-third the process and takes one-third the cost, and “300 times less amount of material consumption.”

Voltech’s Managing Director, M. Umapathi, said that the group has near Chennai a factory building where it once produced textiles. NanoPV intends to bring in plant and machinery from the US and set up a production line here.

The initial capacity would be 10 MW and would gradually be ramped up. Umapathi estimates the cost of the project to be Rs 100 crore.

Solar farm near Tuticorin

Another joint venture of Voltech and NanoPV is putting up a 100 MW solar farm near Tuticorin. The project will be implemented in phases, and work has begun on the first 10 MW.

In this venture, a UAE-based company called Arab Gulf Pearl Trading is also participating. It has taken 50 per cent of the equity. This project too would cost Rs 100 crore.

Work has commenced on the first 2 MW, which will be completed by March 2013. The other 8 MW will be ready to produce power by the end of 2013, Umapathi said.

NanoPV says that its modules can generate 1.8 million units of electricity per MW each year.

The joint venture intends to enter into power purchase agreements with industrial consumers in the state, forming a ‘group-captive’ structure.

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Published on October 30, 2012
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