Solar companies expanding

Amid news of manufacturers realigning or selling off their solar power businesses, such as GE’s move to sell its cadmium telluride (CdTe) technology to First Solar and partner on PV R&D in exchange for a stake in First Solar, and Siemens’s move out of concentrating solar thermal, there are also stories of companies in other parts of the market who are expanding and enthusiastic about the outlook for solar technology.

OutBack Power Technologies, Inc., a designer and manufacturer of power electronics for renewable energy, backup power and mobile applications, announced the grand opening of its new headquarters in the Arlington Advanced Manufacturing Park in Arlington, Wash., next week. Washington Governor Jay Inslee, Arlington Mayor Barbara Tolbert and other guests from state and county government are expected to dedicate the facility, where OutBack Power employs about 70 people and will have hired 20 new employees by the end of 2013 in response to increased interest in renewable energy.

OutBack Power said its expansion into the new 42,000 square-foot facility “comes as the industry grows to meet soaring demand for solar power. With solar now the fastest growing energy source in the United States, the market employs more than 120,000 Americans, and Washington ranks 10th in the country for solar employment. Among the features of the new facility is a training facility where the company plans to provide electrical contractors and solar installers with “the training and accreditation to compete in the growing solar design and installation field.”

Meanwhile, down in Scottsdale, Ariz., REC Solar is expanding its offices. REC Solar is a national solar electric system design and installation firm. The national solar company celebrated the office expansion with a ribbon cutting ceremony and Solar Career Fair on August 15. 

REC Solar specializes in residential, business, government and utility projects, offering a local presence in all major solar markets in the U.S. In 15 years of business, REC Solar has installed more than 11,000 residential and commercial systems nationwide in excess of 160 megawatts. 

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