GS-Solar, a China-based producer of thin film solar modules, has signed an agreement with Japanese international electronics corporation Panasonic to acquire Panasonic’s solar manufacturing subsidiary, Panasonic Energy Malaysia.
Along with acquisition, GS-Solar would establish a new company in collaboration with Panasonic, in which GS-Solar holds a 90% share and Panasonic owns the remaining 10%.
The new company focused on the research and development of HIT technology, is planned to be located in Japan, and both the companies are expected to operate and invest in the new company.
Under the collaboration, GS-Solar is expected to integrate Panasonic’s innovations and manufacturing technologies in the field of HIT to bring innovation in heterojunction technology and develop the energy industry.
In addition, the collaboration would also enable GS-Solar to help start the industrialization and large-scale expansion of next-generation heterojunction technologies on a global scale.
As part of the partnership with GS-Solar, Panasonic will be involved in actively mobilizing energy storage technologies, home energy management systems and emergency power storage systems, along with other new energy resources. The activities are expected to support the development of advanced heterojunction technologies and improve their product competitiveness.
Besides, the company is expected to integrate the HEMS, PV modules, storage batteries, ECO Cute heat pump systems, and electric vehicle charging solutions.
Panasonic is also expected to invest on areas of common development including zero energy consumption buildings (ZEH), and the application of solar energy-related products and technologies to emergency power energy storage systems for use during natural disasters.
In May 2015, Panasonic has expanded its solar cell and module production capacities in Japan with an investment of $79m.
Under the investment, Panasonic expanded the production lines at Shimane SANYO Electric and Shiga photovoltaic (PV) module facilities, adding a combined capacity of 150MW. The expansion was expected to increase the production capacity of its heterojunction with intrinsic thin-layer (HIT) modules to more than 1GW.