- Vikram Solar has expanded its annual module production capacity by 1.3 GW
- The highly automated facility is located in Tamil Nadu’s Indospace Industrial Park
- Vikram Solar said the new fab has ‘forward compatibility’ with upcoming technologies as M12 cell modules, high efficiency bifacial and smart modules
- This project is part of the company’s previously declared plans to set up 3 GW annual PV integrated manufacturing capacity in the state
Having 1.2 GW already operational solar module manufacturing capacity in the Indian state of West Bengal, module manufacturer Vikram Solar Limited has now expanded its annual capacity by another 1.3 GW with a new production facility in Tamil Nadu. This takes the company’s total PV module manufacturing capacity to 2.5 GW, which it claims makes Vikram Solar the ‘largest’ module manufacturer in India.
The 1.3 GW fab, spread over 0.13 million sq. ft. production area, is sited at Indospace Industrial Park in Tamil Nadu’s Oragadam industrial region, and is expected to generate 1,000 jobs in the current phase I. In an official statement with few details, Vikram Solar said the fab has ‘forward compatibility’ with upcoming technologies as M12 cell modules, high efficiency bifacial and smart modules. It is capable of handling module wattage of up to 640W.
Vikram Solar said the new fab is high on automation, Internet of Things (IoT), has artificial intelligence enabled inspection for zero defects, and is complaint with industry 4.0 standards. Location of the facility near sea-port will allow for faster and cost-effective transportation, it added. The fab will also contribute as an R&D platform for next-gen module technology, shared Vikram Solar’s Managing Director Gyanesh Chaudhary.
“We believe that the exponential demand surge for solar energy coupled with a clarion call globally to diversify trade markets and supply chain presents a huge opportunity for indigenous solar manufacturing,” added Chaudhary.
Back in July 2020, Vikram Solar had shared its plans to add 3 GW of vertically integrated solar manufacturing fab—read wafer, cell and modules—in Tamil Nadu over the next 5 years under a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed with the state government (see Vikram Solar To Expand Manufacturing Capacity By 3 GW).
TaiyangNews sought details from the company regarding the Tamil Nadu fab, and learnt from the spokesperson that the new facility is indeed part of the company’s integrated PV manufacturing plans and that there will be additional capacity announced by Vikram Solar to meet the 3 GW target.
Indian government’s stress on domestic manufacturing for solar modules to create local industry to meet its renewable energy targets, and lower dependence on foreign supply chain seems to be working especially since it is offering incentives to the industry in the form of Production Linked Incentive (PLI scheme) (see PLI Scheme Could Support 20 GW Module Sales Over 5 Years). Inspired, a host of companies have announced either their manufacturing expansion plans or have decided to enter PV manufacturing in recent times. Rayzon Solar is another name that said it is expanding its module production capacity by 1.2 GW within 2021, increasing from 300 MW in Gujarat.
In June 2021, Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani announced plans to build 4 gigafactories, including for PV modules, energy storage, electrolyzers and fuel cells (see Indian Billionaire Wants 4 New Energy Gigafactories).