GT Advanced Technologies Inc., a U.S. supplier of solar manufacturing equipment, received two orders for $66.5 million of systems to produce ingredients for polysilicon amid a global glut of the main raw material in solar cells.
SMP Ltd., a joint venture of MEMC Electronic Materials Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co., agreed to buy gear that produces silane, Merrimack, New Hampshire-based GT said today in a statement. A new customer that wasn’t identified will purchase systems that make trichlorosilane.
Prices for polysilicon fell 65 percent last year to $26.52 a kilogram at the end of December as production surged and demand growth slowed for solar panels. Companies that replace existing systems with new ones from GT Advanced can cut their manufacturing costs to about $20 a kilogram, said Pavel Molchanov, an analyst for Raymond James & Associates Inc.
“It may seem counterintuitive that anyone would be adding capacity right now, but these retrofits could be a viable option,” Molchanov said today in a telephone interview. “Some of the higher-cost players need to either exit the market or add equipment capable of producing at a lower cost.”
The two orders have been included in GT Advanced’s backlog for the third quarter of fiscal 2012, which ended Dec. 31.
GT Advanced rose 3.6 percent to $7.69 at the close in New York.