Norway’s Thin Film gets $23M to fund printed electronics roadmap

The Norwegian printed electronics firm Thin Film – which we recently covered for its smart label partnership with Cisco-backed Evrythng – has taken a healthy $23 million in investment from local conglomerate Ferd. Thin Film CEO Davor Sutija said in a statement that the investment, for a 7.3 percent stake, “fully funds” the firm’s current product roadmap. Printed electronics are generally pretty cheap to implement, and Thin Film (an entry on our Mobile 15 list a couple years back) wants to add electronic functionality to items such as perishable food packaging, disposable goods, single-use medical products and so on.

First Solar ekes by with a profit, and sets sights overseas

First Solar generated profits for the third quarter as it marches into new markets and carries out cost-cutting measures to compete at a time when there is an oversupply of solar panels worldwide and many of its rivals have declared losses or gone out of business.

A Chinese solar company you should know: Hanergy

Hanergy, a Chinese solar manufacturer, has been making news lately, first with the purchase of a German solar company and then on Wednesday with a 3-year deal to make and install solar panels on Ikea’s stores on China. But who is Hanergy?

A word of caution for next-gen solar startups

It’s been painfully apparent that many of the well-funded startups building next-gen solar tech have yet to ship solar panels in any large volumes and have missed their targets. And even the folks in the solar industry are starting to take each other to task.

As Solyndra falls, Stion scales up

Silicon Valley solar thin-film startup, Stion, on Friday officially opened the door of its factory in Mississippi, marking a milestone for the company as it seeks to expand production quickly in an increasingly competitive market.

The story behind Solyndra’s rise and fall

Solyndra just became a high-profile casualty of the youthful solar industry as Solyndra failed to compete successfully against larger solar rivals in a global market that depends heavily on government subsidies. Here’s what went wrong.

First Solar on the Hunt for New Markets

Hunting for new markets has become a bigger priority for First Solar, whose executives sounded a cautious note about the market outlook on Thursday and reported declining sales and net income for the fourth quarter.

Is Solar Thin Film Profitable? Not So Much

Solar thin films have to be cheap, and that mandate makes it difficult for startups to be profitable. In fact, these alternatives to silicon solar panels are on average 12 percent cheaper, said Paula Mints of Navigant Consulting.

First Solar Snaps Up RayTracker for Tracking Tech

First Solar’s own power generation projects have always been mounted on racks that don’t tilt throughout the day to follow the sun, but the company is exploring the use of trackers. First Solar announced Friday it has bought RayTracker for an undisclosed sum.

AQT Plans for Solar Factory in South Carolina

AQT Solar, which opened a factory in Silicon Valley last year, is heading to South Carolina to set up a solar cell factory that will start with 30-40 MW of annual production capacity and reach about 1,000
MW by the end of 2014.