OTISVILLE, N.Y. — The solar division of Spire Corp. will supply solar cells to Unicor’s new photovoltaic module factory under a $55 million contract with Federal Prison Industries.
Unicor’s photovoltaic production facility, which will manufacture PV modules for federal, state and local government agencies, is located at the Federal Correctional Institution Otisville. Inmates staffing the production facility will receive practical training and industry-specific skills designed to support their future employment in the solar industry.
“The United States represents a huge growing market for photovoltaics,” says Roger Little, chairman and CEO of Spire Corp. “We are delighted to play a leading role in the training of people for this industry, which requires more and more skilled labor.”
Spire, of Bedford, Mass., which supplied the turnkey module manufacturing line, process technology, production equipment and operational training, also provided certification assistance to ensure the factory and its modules meet international standards.
“Unicor recognizes the potential for module production to serve the United States federal government,” says Todd Baldau, public information officer at Unicor. “It is important to enter quickly and have the factory running, staff and inmates trained and certification completed.”