Total and its affiliate SunPower, a Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of high efficiency solar cells, solar panels and solar systems, announced Thursday the commissioning of a new photovoltaic solar panel manufacturing and assembly plant in the De Vernejoul industrial park in Porcelette, Eastern France.
The 3,300-square-meter plant is equipped with a 44 MWp2 production line and will roll out approximately 150,000 high efficiency solar panels annually. At this facility, SunPower’s Maxeon solar cells, the most efficient technology available today, will be integrated and assembled into SunPower solar panels that will deliver a median efficiency of 20 percent. These solar panels will service the European residential and commercial rooftop markets.
The new production facility, SunPower Manufacturing De Vernejoul, will employ approximately 80 workers, with preference given to local residents.
“We believe our new De Vernejoul manufacturing facility, located at the heart of major European solar markets, allows us to supply the world’s highest efficiency solar panels to our customers,” said Marty Neese, SunPower chief operating officer. “This physical proximity to our French, Italian, German and Belgian customers will enhance our flexibility and shorten our delivery lead times, ramping up our ability to compete in today’s highly competitive market.”
“SunPower is the linchpin of Total’s solar activities. We intend to build on the quality and performance of its products as well as on its technological innovation to further grow solar energy,” emphasized Arnaud Chaperon, vice president, Electricity & New Energies at Total. “The new solar panel manufacturing facility, SunPower’s second in France alongside the facility in Toulouse, is further proof of our commitment to pursue growth internationally and in France. The opening of this plant, also demonstrates our dedication to developing jobs in the Lorraine region of eastern France.”