U.S. to Host Siemens’ New Utility-Scale Solar Inverter Manufacturing Facility

U.S. to Host Siemens' New Utility-Scale Solar Inverter Manufacturing Facility

German engineering giant Siemens is further enhancing its footprint in the United States with the announcement of a new manufacturing facility, committed to producing 800 MW of utility-scale string inverters annually starting in 2024.

The factory, which signifies a collaboration between Siemens and its manufacturing partner Sanmina, will focus on the production of Blueplanet string inverters. This new commitment builds on Siemens’ 2019 acquisition of the inverter business of KACO, a partnership that already saw active inverter production at the Kenosha, Wisconsin site.

This U.S. investment comes in the wake of favorable tax credits and demand-side incentives such as the domestic content bonus in the Inflation Reduction Act. These incentives are fostering record investments in clean energy manufacturing across the country. Siemens’ announcement contributes significantly to the burgeoning domestic supply chain for renewable energy. Over the past four years alone, Siemens has funneled $3 billion into U.S. manufacturing and acquisitions.

Brian Dula, vice president of electrification and automation at Siemens Smart Infrastructure USA, highlighted the importance of this new initiative. He said, “Working with Sanmina to establish this new production line, Siemens is well positioned to address supply challenges our country is facing as we work to localize production for green and renewable infrastructure.”

The KACO blueplanet inverters, ranging from 110 kW to 165 kW, present an innovative and more transportable solution for utility-scale projects compared to larger containerized central inverters. With a robust silicon carbide design, these inverters are NEMA 4X enclosed and compatible with fused, cable-trunking systems up to 600 kcmil, effectively eliminating the need for string-combiner boxes.

Siemens further emphasized the strategic advantages of single-MPPT inverters in a recent whitepaper, stating, “Single-MPPT inverters are proving to be the preferred choice when it comes to ease of layout and flexibility in design. It is clear that in today’s inverter landscape there is no one multi-MPPT inverter which can provide a satisfactory design for all high-power modules.” The company further explained that the KACO single-MPPT string inverter range simplifies design and enhances flexibility through the use of DC combiners, an essential factor when optimizing PV module layouts.

Siemens’ new venture underscores the continuing commitment of global corporations to the expansion of renewable energy. By enhancing domestic manufacturing capacity and delivering innovative products, the company is actively participating in the push towards cleaner and more sustainable energy options. This move not only reflects the growing global trend towards sustainability but also represents an investment in the U.S. economy and its evolving energy landscape.

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