A recent news release from General Electric (GE) stated that the company will build the United States’ largest solar panel factory. GE estimates that it will create 450 jobs in Colorado and New York. According to the release, GE chose Aurora, Colorado (adjacent to Denver) “primarily because the location will allow for accelerated speed to market: GE expects the first panels to come off the assembly line in 2012, with commercial availability in the second half of 2013.” Earlier this year GE completed the purchase of PrimeStar Solar in an western suburb of Denver. GE’s latest move expands their presence in Colorado.
GE will not construct a new building, but rather will locate their factory in an existing structure. The company expects to produce enough solar panels to provide electricity for 80,000 homes annually when operating at full capacity. The Denver Post reports that the factory will make 400 megawatts of solar panels.
The Post goes on to state that the “technology, which applies a micro-thin layer of Cadmium telluride to a glass plate to create a solar cell was invented at NREL [the National Renewable Energy Lab] and commercially developed at PrimeStar,” the company GE acquired earlier in the year. This acquisition laid the ground work for GE’s increased investment in Colorado.