“Årdal has an important task in quenching the ever-increasing thirst for solar energy products worldwide. Expertise in the fields of metallurgy, processes and industrialization explain why Norway and Årdal can fulfill this role,” said Hydro President and CEO Eivind Reiten when he congratulated NorSun on the opening of the company’s first plant on Wednesday.
The plant, which is located in Årdal, produces super-thin silicon wafers for use in solar cell production and will provide employment for about 120 persons.
Norway's Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit performed the official opening of the solar energy plant in Årdal.
Hydro holds an 18-percent stake in NorSun and is its biggest industrial owner. NorSun is one of several solar energy investments made by Hydro in recent years.
The recently established plant stands right next to Hydro’s carbon plant in Årdal. Hydro's aluminium plant is situated in the upper Årdal area, next to the company's large research center with 100 employees. Eivind Reiten also took this opportunity to applaud the high level of education in the district:
“The Årdal Research Center is one of the most prominent in the world, and it is no coincidence that Årdal is the place in Norway with the greatest concentration of doctoral degrees in Norway, surpassed only by Trondheim.”
Facade solutions from Hydro
There is another connection between Hydro and NorSun's new silicon wafer plant in Årdal, apart from Hydro's ownership stake.
The building's exterior glass facades and entrance areas were made using aluminium profile solutions from the Hydro-owned Wicona brand, all delivered by Hydro Building Systems.