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Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 16:01 EDT

Soitec Opens its Solar Manufacturing Facility in San Diego to Locally Produce CPV Modules for the U.S. Renewable Energy Market

December 20, 2012

SAN DIEGO, December 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ –

Soitec (Euronext), a world leader in generating and manufacturing revolutionary
semiconductor materials for the electronics and energy industries, announced today the
grand opening of its North American solar manufacturing facility in San Diego. Less than
one year after the facility was acquired by Soitec, the factory is equipped with a
state-of-the-art automated production line and is operational. The concentrator
photovoltaic (CPV) modules produced in San Diego will support hundreds of MWp of contracts
for utility-scale projects in California. In 2011, the California Public Utilities
Commission (CPUC) approved 300 MWp of PPAs which are expected to use Soitec’s Concentrix
technology.

Soitec acquired the 176,000-square-foot manufacturing center on 14.8 acres of land in
December 2011. This major project for Soitec represents an investment of more than $150
million. The company has completed on schedule an extensive upgrade of the facilities to
install fully-automated manufacturing equipment and processes. The first module was
produced in October, and the first phase (140 MWp) of the production line is now
operational, as initially planned. The factory has been designed to reach 280 MWp in
capacity at full production.

M+W U.S., Inc, a subsidiary of the M+W Group – a leading global engineering and
construction partner for technology-based clients and renowned in constructing solar cell
manufacturing facilities, was the general contractor for the facility construction work.
At the peak of construction, over 280 people were employed on the site.

The factory should create 450 jobs at full capacity, including employees for the joint
venture Reflexite Soitec Optical Technology, LLC. This new company operates a
manufacturing operation within the facility developing and manufacturing leading-edge
silicone-on-glass (SOG) Fresnel lens plates used in Soitec’s CPV modules.

“I want to congratulate Soitec on the opening of its factory here in San Diego, and
thank the many organizations and individuals who worked together to help bring the company
to San Diego. The city, CleanTECH San Diego, the Regional EDC, UC San Diego and SDG&E
combined their resources to show Soitec that San Diego was as enticing as any other region
in the desert Southwest, and as a result Soitec chose to bring 450 new jobs to San Diego
and invest in the future of their company here because of our green credentials and our
leadership in renewable energy,” commented San Diego Mayor Bob Filner.

With this manufacturing plant, Soitec will become one of the top three manufacturers
of solar modules in the USA. This will help Soitec provide cost-effective renewable energy
systems and put the company in an ideal position to support its customers with a dedicated
local team.

“By producing high volumes of CPV modules at this facility, we are now able to help
California meet its renewable energy goals and further support the US market. Soitec
already manages six factories around the world, and this gives us strong expertise in
industrial processes, manufacturing and quality systems. We have also installed CPV
systems in 14 countries on four continents. I am very pleased and honored that we can now
offer the full benefits of this know-how in meeting US needs,” said Andre-Jacques
Auberton-Herve, chairman and CEO of Soitec.

Focus on the CPV technology developed by Soitec

Soitec’s CPV technology uses triple-junction cells mounted on a glass plate. Fresnel
lenses (manufactured using silicone on glass) concentrate sunlight 500 times before it
reaches these cells, which convert it into electricity. A metal frame holds two glass
plates to form highly robust, durable and resilient modules. By combining several modules
on biaxial trackers (based on a proprietary algorithm automatically optimizing their
position based on the path of the sun), Soitec maximizes energy generation throughout the
day.

With yields of 30% from its CPV modules, Soitec achieves at least twice the
performance of conventional photovoltaic technologies. Combined with low installation and
maintenance costs, this leading efficiency is making CPV technology the most
cost-efficient solution for high-volume power generation in regions with high direct
normal irradiation (DNI).

About Soitec

Soitec is an international manufacturing company, a world leader in generating and
manufacturing revolutionary semiconductor materials at the frontier of the most exciting
energy and electronic challenges. Soitec’s products include substrates for
microelectronics (most notably SOI: Silicon-on-Insulator) and concentrator photovoltaic
systems (CPV). The company’s core technologies are Smart Cut(TM), Smart Stacking(TM) and
Concentrix(TM), as well as expertise in epitaxy. Applications include consumer and mobile
electronics, microelectronics-driven IT, telecommunications, automotive electronics,
lighting products and large scale solar power plants. Soitec has manufacturing plants and
R&D centers in France, Singapore, Germany, and the United States. For more information,
visit: http://www.soitec.com.

Soitec’s dedicated event press room:

http://www.soitec.com/events/san-diego-opening

        International Media Contacts

        Business press:
        Marylen Schmidt
        +33(0)4-76-92-87-83
        marylen.schmidt@soitec.com

        Trade press:
        Camille Darnaud-Dufour
        +33(0)6-79-49-51-43
        camille.darnaud-dufour@soitec.com

        Investor Relations
        Olivier Brice
        +33(0)4-76-92-93-80
        olivier.brice@soitec.com

        French Media Contact
        Marie-Caroline Saro
        H&B Communication
        +33(0)1-58-18-32-44
        mc.saro@hbcommunication.fr

SOURCE Soitec


Source: PR Newswire