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European renewables co. expands into US with Houston-area solar panel manufacturing facility

A Turkish solar panel manufacturing company has opened its first US location just outside of Houston. Photo courtesy of Elin Energy

A European company opened a new 225,000-square-foot solar panel assembly facility in Waller County, and it has the capacity to manufacture 2,000 megawatts annually.

Turkish company Elin Energy opened it new space in Twinwood Business Park with the help from Houston real estate development company The Welcome Group and Houston construction company KDW. It's Elin Energy's first location in the United States.

The Waller facility aims to “catapult the company’s growth in the Western hemisphere and reinforce its commitment to sustainable energy production and innovation,” according to a news release. Elin’s panel designs boost the productivity of solar panels by requiring less space than traditional systems.

Photo courtesy of Elin Energy

“The facility [Elin has leased] was designed with generous bay spacing, clear height and upgraded power to accommodate and upgraded power to accommodate a variety of manufacturing needs,” Welcome Wilson Jr., president and CEO of the Welcome Group, says in the release. “Elin Energy’s state-of-the-art solar manufacturing equipment easily fit into the building footprint. The first equipment lines are installed, and the future equipment lines have been ordered.”

One of Europe's top producers of photovoltaic panels, Elin Energy's new facility features two solar panel manufacturing lines. The Waller County Economic Development Partnership and efforts from the state helped bring Elin to the area. Elin aims to bring around 100 jobs by the end of their first year of operations with an estimated 450 by the end of year seven.

KDW completed the build in under 6 months.

“The equipment delivery demanded an aggressive schedule which made it essential that all parties involved have a heightened level of coordination and cooperation,” KDW Construction Manager Bryan Harrison says in the release.

Photo courtesy of Elin Energy

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A View From HETI

LiNova will use the funds to advance its polymer cathode battery technology. Photo via Getty Images

A California startup that's revolutionizing polymer cathode battery technology has announced its series A round of funding with support from Houston-based energy transition leaders.

LiNova Energy Inc. closed a $15.8 million series A round led by Catalus Capital. Saft, a subsidiary of TotalEnergies, which has its US HQ in Houston, and Houston-based Chevron Technology Ventures, also participated in the round with a coalition of other investors.

LiNova will use the funds with its polymer cathode battery to advance the energy storage landscape, according to the company. The company uses a high-energy polymer battery technology that is designed to allow material replacement of the traditional cathode that is made up of cobalt, nickel, and other materials.

The joint development agreement with Saft will have them collaborate to develop the battery technology for commercialization in Saft's key markets.

“We are proud to collaborate with LiNova in scaling up its technology, leveraging the extensive experience of Saft's research teams, our newest prototype lines, and our industrial expertise in battery cell production," Cedric Duclos, CEO of Saft, says in a news release.

CTV recently announced its $500 million Future Energy Fund III, which aims to lead on emerging mobility, energy decentralization, industrial decarbonization, and the growing circular economy. Chevron has promised to spend $10 billion on lower carbon energy investments and projects by 2028.

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