New Mexico Welcomes Signet Solar Production Facility
New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson announced on December 16 that Signet Solar will build the company's first North American solar panel production facility in Belen, about 30 miles south of Albuquerque. The plant is expected to begin operating in 2010 and to bring 200 jobs to the state. Long-term plans call for expansion and the creation of 600 jobs.
The facility will produce large-area, thin-film silicon photovoltaic modules. The first phase will have an annual production capacity of 65 megawatts (MW), eventually increasing to 300 MW per year.
Signet plans to build the facility on 75 acres on Rancho Cielo, a Coast Range Investments property in Belen. Signet will be the first company to set up manufacturing in the 6,000-acre industrial and residential community. Rancho Cielo plans to use Signet panels on a 700-acre solar farm designed to meet most of the community's power requirements.
Signet's management indicated that the company decided to build the plant in New Mexico because the state has demonstrated commitment to renewable energy through public-private partnerships and leveraged its skilled workforce and research institutions.
Richardson said, "At a time of economic uncertainty, this project will create hundreds of jobs and reaffirm New Mexico as a clean energy state and major player in our nation's effort build a new clean energy economy."
For more information, see the governor's December 16 press release.
To read more about renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in New Mexico, see:
- New Mexico news published on the EERE Web site.
- Brief project descriptions from the New Mexico Energy Office published in the EERE State Energy Program newsletter, Conservation Update.
- New Mexico publications listed in the EERE State Publications Database.