Astronergy upgrades production line in Germany


The solar module manufacturer Astronergy has upgraded the first of its five production lines to enable significantly higher throughput. This will allow the company – a subsidiary of the Chint Group, a leading international manufacturer of industrial electronics – to cut the unit costs of its modules and thus to ensure it remains competitive in the German and European markets. Astronergy has been continuously investing in and optimizing its manufacturing lines since 2014, in order to ensure its production in Germany is always at the cutting edge of technology.

The K-line – made by Astronergy

Instead of 700 modules, the “K-line” can now produce 1,000 modules per day with the same high quality. And improvements to system self-diagnostics, as well as some reinforced components, have also helped to cut downtime. This means that the K-line requires less frequent maintenance. Additionally, retooling of the system was simplified to enable a quicker changeover between different types of module production.

The K-line was implemented by the Astronergy engineers themselves. Andreas Lindner, Engineering Director at Astronergy, says: “The whole team is extremely proud, especially as they planned, built and started up the line themselves. We did slightly underestimate the amount of work required to bring the line into operation, but we used the time to deploy better equipment with greater uptime and even better accuracy, e.g. when applying the strings. This makes the new line much more productive, which is important for us to be able to manufacture competitive solar modules.” And since the line was developed using the company’s own know-how, any problems which arise can be resolved directly with minimal delays. 

The K-line was completed in mid-December and is now fully ready for operation after a successful test run. Thanks to the valuable work performed by its own engineers, Astronergy even managed to bring the new line into operation under budget. The company plans to begin work on the retooling of the second line shortly. This should be completed in the summer of 2018. These investments once again underline the long-term development and safeguarding taking place at the site.

Greater competition creates need for maximum efficiency

The site in Frankfurt (Oder) has become one of Europe’s largest production sites for polycrystalline and monocrystalline modules. The manufacturer is also seeing a rise in demand for monocrystalline modules. In 2017 more than 25 megawatts (MW) of this type were sold, and the upward trend continues. Within Europe, there is also a rise in inquiries from Benelux, Scandinavia, Italy and Poland.

Sebastian Mäscher, Head of Sales at Astronergy, says: “We know from experience that our customers have faith in us thanks to our consistent product quality, our close, long-standing partnerships and the whole set-up of the company, with the backing of an extremely strong international group.” To continue strengthening and improving the company’s position in the German and European markets, however, distribution must be yet more closely monitored and sustainably developed, says Mäscher.

Source: Astronergy

Similar Entries

The solar module manufacturer Astronergy is profiting from the favourable market conditions in the wholesale sector. The company has won over a majority of electrical and photovoltaics wholesale customers who previously obtained their modules from SolarWorld. Astronergy’s solar modules are produced in one of the world’s most cutting-edge factories at its Frankfurt (Oder) site, Germany, and are sold via wholesale partners.

Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy released its results for the first quarter of fiscal 2018 (October-December) [2] today; financial performance was in line with the guidance for the year, and commercial activity was strong in all business units. Between October and December, the company received orders for 2.8 GW of turbines (+29%), driven by both the onshore business (+19%) and the offshore business, where orders practically doubled.

Heterojunction solar modules produced by the leading Russian manufacturer and PV project developer Hevel Group (a part of Renova Group) were certified by TÜV Rheinland, as an independent third-party is accredited for testing and certifying photovoltaic systems and components according to various international standards. Hevel’s PV modules were qualified with IEC 61215 and IEC 61730.

REC Group has awarded Meyer Burger a contract for the delivery and installation of its next generation SmartWire Connection Technology (SWCT™) as the manufacturing basis for its newest high efficiency solar modules.