NEWARK, Del., April 27, 2001 AstroPower, Inc.’s Spanish joint venture, AstraSolar, has been chosen to supply advanced APex&trade solar cells for a 13MW solar electric power plant to be built in Murcia, Spain.
When completed, the power plant will be approximately four times larger than any photovoltaic power plant currently in operation, and will cover an area equivalent to 57 soccer fields.
A consortium formed to construct and operate the project includes: Atersa (co-owner of AstraSolar), Iberdrola (a major Spanish electric utility), and a group of private investors. The consortium intends to capitalize on various incentives offered by the region of Murcia, the Spanish Government, and the European Union.
The project plan calls for a construction period of approximately two years and a total cost of approximately $65 million. The solar power plant is designed to generate up to four percent of the total peak load for the Murcia region, which has one of the best solar resources in Spain.
Atersa is one of Spain’s leading solar power companies, and a key AstroPower customer. Founded in 1979, Atersa has offices in Madrid, Cordoba, and Valencia. Atersa also co-owns and manages AstraSolar, our joint venture solar cell manufacturing facility based in Valencia that began solar cell production in March 2000. For the Murcia project, AstraSolar plans to supply advanced large-area APex™ solar cells based on AstroPower’s patented Silicon-Film™ technology.
Fernando Monera, Atersa President, said: “This project demonstrates the leadership position of the Spanish industry within the rapidly growing European market for solar electric power.”
Dr. Allen Barnett, President and CEO of AstroPower, added: “We take great pride in our partnership with Atersa. We are very pleased that our AstraSolar joint venture has been chosen to supply the core component of this ground- breaking project.”
Headquartered in Newark, Delaware, AstroPower is the world’s largest independent manufacturer of solar electric power products, and one of the world’s fastest growing solar electric power companies. AstroPower develops, manufactures, markets and sells PV solar cells, modules, panels and systems for generating solar electric power. Solar electric power systems provide a clean, renewable source of electricity in both off-grid and on-grid applications.
In December 2000 AstroPower was added to the S&P SmallCap 600. In February 2001 AstroPower was ranked 39th on Business Week’s Top 50 S&P Small Cap Company list for one- and three-year performance. For more information, please visit www.astropower.com.