Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Bila Solar to produce ultra-lightweight solar modules in the U.S.

Bila Solar (Bila), an innovative solar energy company, has announced plans to open a state-of-the-art solar module manufacturing facility in Indianapolis.

The Singapore-based company will invest more than $35 million in its new headquarters and manufacturing facility, renovating and equipping an existing 150,000-square-foot space. It expects to create nearly 250 jobs once the plant is fully operational and revitalize a long-neglected economic sector in the United States.

The new facility will be capable of producing one gigawatt (GW) of innovative glassless, frameless solar modules per year – an output akin to crafting around 5,000 high-capacity modules daily. Bila plans to begin production in the summer of 2024.

“We’re bringing to the U.S. market ultralight modules that go where traditional solar panels can’t go. In Indianapolis, we found a central urban location, a diverse workforce, and an entrepreneurial spirit – ideal for our out-of-the-box approach to making clean energy attainable for all,” said Mick McDaniel, VP & U.S. General Manager of Bila Solar.

The company’s debut product is a lightweight solar module that combines the reliability and high efficiency of crystalline silicon solar cells with the lightness of specially designed and patented aerospace composites.

These modules weigh only 30% of regular glass panels and are 95% slimmer, which makes them ideal for a wide range of challenging applications, including low load-bearing commercial and industrial roofs, waterproof membrane roofs, and integration into vehicles for solar power, off-grid energy utilization, and even curved surfaces. This breakthrough increases opportunities for solar power where traditional glass modules cannot be used, accelerating the transition to clean energy.

“Solar energy should be accessible and abundant for everyone,” continued McDaniel. “We look forward to driving innovation in Indiana to pursue that mission.”

CBRE facilitated the real estate transaction on behalf of Bila Solar and Cushman & Wakefield for the building’s landlord, Forest Creek Ventures, and William Tres Development. Site Selection Group assisted Bila Solar with procuring state and local incentives for this exciting project.