Wednesday, January 16, 2008

LDK Solar says secures chemicals for silicon plant

NEW YORK, Jan 16 (Reuters) - LDK Solar Co Ltd said on Wednesday it had signed a long-term contract to buy trichlorosilane (TCS), a chemical used to make polysilicon, from Jiangxi Ganzhong Chlorine & Caustic Co Ltd.

Polysilicon is the key material in many photovoltaic cells that turn sunlight into electricity, but shortages of the material have driven prices for the material sharply higher.

Under the contract, Ganzhong will supply a minimum of 400 tons of TCS per month beginning in May 2008 and an expected minimum supply of 1,600 tons per month beginning in August.
Financial details of the contract were not released.

"We are pleased to enter into an agreement with Ganzhong to secure this key manufacturing material for our first polysilicon facility," stated Xiaofeng Peng, Chairman and CEO. "Ganzhong's close proximity to our polysilicon plant will enhance efficiencies. Through this contract with Ganzhong, we have secured 100% of our TCS requirements for planned polysilicon production in our first facility."

LDK is currently building a polysilicon production plant adjacent to its current solar wafer manufacturing facilities in Xinyu City, China, and analysts are closely watching the schedule of the plant's development.

LDK has said completion of the reactor building for the polysilicon plant is scheduled for April, and support equipment will be installed there in June.

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