Deliver Your News to the World

Sharp to Develop "Manufacturing Complex for the 21st Century"


Sharp Corporation has been engaged in the manufacture of energy-saving LCDs and energy-creating solar cells as the pillars of its business, with the goal of being an “environmentally advanced company.” Now, the company has made the decision to build on the same site a new state-of-the-art LCD panel plant and solar cell plant for the mass production of thin-film solar cells in Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture.

This project is being developed as a “manufacturing complex for the 21st century” that will incorporate relevant infrastructure and facilities, as well as attract material and production equipment manufacturers to construct plants on the same site.

1. A Manufacturing Complex for the 21st Century
Further development of the vertically integrated business model nurtured at the Kameyama Plant

In addition to infrastructure-related facilities and production equipment manufacturers, a number of leading material manufacturers such as glass substrate and color filter makers will be invited to set up plants adjacent to Sharp’s new LCD panel plant within this manufacturing complex. Shared infrastructure such as gas and electricity can provide for improved productivity.

The aim is to achieve vertical integration that transcends the barriers between companies by pushing the vertically integrated business model created at the Kameyama Plant--from LCD panels to LCD TVs--further upstream in the supply chain.

This will create an unprecedented, revolutionary business presence offering advantages such as reducing distribution costs and unifying operations, including production planning.

In addition, the close collaboration of Sharp engineers working with material and equipment manufacturers who have superior technical capabilities can be expected to engender new technical innovations through the fusion of knowledge and know-how.

Horizontal deployment of thin-film technology

TFT LCDs and thin-film solar cells are based on the same thin-film technologies, and can share materials and utilities. The application of LCD technologies to thin-film solar cells can be expected to yield even greater improvements in performance.

2. LCD Panel Plant
The LCD panel plant will be the first in the world to use 10th-generation glass substrates, the world’s largest size (2,850 mm x 3,050 mm), 60% larger than the 8th-generation substrates used at Kameyama Plant No. 2. This 10th-generation glass substrate will yield six LCD panels in the 60-inch class, eight panels in the 50-inch class, or 15 panels in the 40-inch class, making it possible to fabricate LCD panels for large-screen TVs with extremely high levels of efficiency.

Construction is slated to start in November of this year, with production operations scheduled to start by March 2010.

3. Solar Cell Plant
The solar cell plant will focus on mass production of thin-film solar cells. Sharp is the world’s leading manufacturer of solar cells in terms of production volume*1, and has already commercialized thin-film solar cells that achieve a power generating efficiency that is among the best in the industry.

Plans call for a production volume of around 1,000 MW (1 million kW) per year for the thin-film solar cells to be manufactured at this facility. This level is expected to maximize economies of scale, and make this factory the largest solar cell plant in the world*2. Operations are slated to begin at same time as the LCD panel plant.

*1 According to the April 2007 issue of PV News, a US publication.
*2 As of July 31, 2007.

Overview of the New Plants
Sakaihama District of Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture (Chikko-yawata-machi, Sakai-ku, Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture)
Site area:
1.27 million m2

LCD Panel Plant
Amount of investment:
Approx. 380 billion yen (including land acquisition costs)
Start of construction:
November 2007
Start of operations:
By March 2010
Main products:
LCD panels for large-screen LCD TVs in the 40-, 50- and 60-inch class
Glass substrate size:
2,850 mm x 3,050 mm (10th generation)
Each substrate can yield 6 panels in the 60-inch class, 8 panels in the 50-inch class, or 15 panels in the 40-inch class.
Input capacity:
72,000 substrates per month
(initial capacity at start of operations: 36,000 substrates per month)

Solar Cell Plant Details on investment amount and other factors are currently under review.
Start of operations:
By March 2010
Production item:
Thin-film solar cells
The following information is true and accurate at the time of publication. Manufacture, sale, price and specifications of products may be subjected to change.


This news content was configured by WebWire editorial staff. Linking is permitted.

News Release Distribution and Press Release Distribution Services Provided by WebWire.