Hey there, solar Fools.
Before we get into the week's solar news, let me bring you up to date on the Bureau of Land Management's solar farm moratorium. The BLM clearly received some persuasive feedback, and promptly reversed itself last week. The bureau continues to accept applications for future solar development on federal land.
Early in the week, GT Solar set its IPO terms. This company, headquartered in New Hampshire of all places, provides solar manufacturing equipment across the full photovoltaic (PV) production chain, from polysilicon reactors to module fabrication lines. GT did $244 million in sales through the fiscal year ending March 31, and customers include LDK Solar
If you've avoided investing in the solar producers themselves, and would prefer to own a company that sells them the "picks and shovels," GT might be an interesting candidate. I plan on reading through the prospectus this weekend, and I'll share my thoughts soon.
In more recent days, SunPower
With great fanfare, SunPower announced that it's landed the largest solar PV power plant deal in the country: a 25-megawatt installation for FPL Group
With no fanfare whatsoever, First Solar quietly advanced its own utility-scale agenda. On Thursday, the firm received approval for California's first thin-film power plant. Because thin-film technology is less efficient than traditional PV, the Edison International
So who's got the edge here? It's early to say, but let the most reliable and lowest balance-of-system cost provider win.