Intel Spins Off $50M Solar Company: SpectraWatt To Open Facility in Oregon

6/17/08Follow @gthuang

Looks like Intel is officially entering the renewable-energy space. The Santa Clara, CA-based chipmaker, which has major operations in the Northwest, has announced that it is spinning out an independent solar-energy company called SpectraWatt (an awful name, can we all agree). Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) said in a statement that the company was formed “to spur new development and demand for renewable energy sources.”

Intel Capital is leading a $50 million round of financing in SpectraWatt, joined by Cogentrix Energy (a wholly owned subsidiary of The Goldman Sachs Group), PCG Clean Energy and Technology Fund, and Solon AG.

SpectraWatt will build photovoltaic cells for solar module suppliers. It will focus on advancing the technology while reducing manufacturing costs, which has always been the issue with solar cells. (We’ll be following closely to see how they do there—a Moore’s Law equivalent for solar, anyone?) The company’s manufacturing and technology development facility is expected to be up and running in Oregon, presumably near Portland, later this year. Its first products are supposed to ship in mid-2009.

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Deputy Editor, National IT Editor, and the Editor of Xconomy Boston. You can e-mail him at gthuang@xconomy.com or call him at 617-252-7323. Follow @gthuang

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  • Dhia A. Shkair

    Hi
    I am Iraqi eng. And I think that your produce is suitable in my country ,would u inform me about the convert solar power to electric power to housing and yard lighting use also the prices ,and can we corporation in this field to inter t Iraqi markets, I forward to hear you soon.
    Regards
    Elec. engineer
    Dhia A. Shkair
    Darna- Libya