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July 25th, 2007
I had a chance recently to visit with one of the individuals responsible for IBM's (NYSE:IBM) Big Green Innovations strategy - which has made a splash in the cleantech world over the last half year. We were talking on a range of topics, but one that piqued my interest was the description of IBM's work in photovoltaics - and a few thoughts on where they were going. I did not ask, and he did not offer, any particulars on the work in progress, but he did make mention of a few points that I thought were well worth repeating:
* IBM is expecting to be a player in the solar cell business - likely seeing commercial impact in the next 18 months to two years.
* IBM is developing both advanced crystalline technologies and CIGS processes - relying on their semiconductor manufacturing expertise and nanotech research to make breakthroughs in controlling PV manufacturing processes.
* You will not likely see IBM making branded modules - perhaps instead a cell production business strategy?
* IBM sees the potential for very high efficiency multi-junction cells in foreseeable future.
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