Nov 08, 2010
demand for functional films
Expansion of production capacity for functional films
such as barrier films and solar cell components
Toppan Printing Co., Ltd. (hereafter Toppan Printing; head office: Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo; President & CEO: Shingo Kaneko) will expand its Fukaya Plant (Fukaya, Saitama Prefecture), a manufacturing base for functional films such as barrier films and solar cell components, and increase production capacity.
With this expansion, new production lines for barrier films and solar cell components will be installed. The company will aim to expand business in the living environment and environmental energy fields with an increase in the production capacity for functional films which includes raising capacity for solar cell backsheets to roughly 2.5 times the current level.
In recent years there has been increasing demand for functional films, particularly in overseas markets. These films include solar cell backsheets and barrier films that are used as packaging and component materials for improving quality retention for final products.
The solar cell market is expanding rapidly due to factors such as increasing environmental awareness in Japan and the introduction of various subsidies such as a system for buying surplus energy promoted by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. The market is also expanding overseas in European countries such as Germany and in the United States and growth of the Asian market is also anticipated.
In order to respond to this demand, solar cell manufacturers are increasing production and therefore there is also an increase in demand for related components such as backsheets and sealing film.
Toppan Printing built the Fukaya Plant as a production base for functional films. Its construction was completed in April 2009.
Business for barrier films has been expanded centered on GL Film (*1), a clear vapor deposition film that boasts the world’s highest standard for barrier properties that do not allow moisture or oxygen to pass through the film. With this enhancement, in addition to bolstering production capacity for GL Film, Toppan Printing plans to manufacture films that have functions that meet various needs, such as new films that have even higher barrier performance.
In solar cell components, production capacity will be enhanced for solar cell backsheet products including BS-TX, a new product that applies DuPont’s (TM) Tedlar(R) PVF film technology. Production equipment for solar cell encapsulation film (*2) will also be newly introduced and the company will target the expansion of business in the field of environmental energy.
Copyright 2010 TOPPAN PRINTING CO., LTD.
Overview of Fukaya Plant
-Location: Honda 1158, Fukaya, Saitama Prefecture
-Site area: 166,233m2
-Expanded floor area (planned):
Approximately 28,292m2 (After expansion)
Approximately 20,680m2 (Expanded section)
-Commencement of work (planned): November 2010
-Completion (planned): March 2011
-Manufactured products: Barrier films, solar cell backsheets, sealing films
-Investment (planned): Approximately 5 billion yen
-Production capacity (planned):
Barrier films - 30% increase
Solar cell backsheets - Approximately 5GW/year
Solar cell encapsulation film - Increase incrementally in line with backsheet production
Toppan Printing will continue to undertake technical development to enable the production of high quality functional films such as barrier films and solar cell components. Centering on the Fukaya Plant, which is one of the largest manufacturing bases in Japan, the company will gradually increase production equipment to respond to customer needs and market expansion and will proactively expand business.
(*1) GL Film (Clear barrier film)
GL Film is the generic name given to a group of clear barrier films developed by Toppan Printing. The films do not use chlorine-based resins and have an excellent reputation both in Japan and in overseas markets centered on Asia due to the wealth of variations available and the world’s highest standard for barrier properties, produced through original vapor deposition processing technology. Today GL Film is a top brand in the clear barrier film market and is used in over 5,000 products from 500 companies in 30 countries and regions.
(*2) Solar cell encapsulation film
This is a film that seals the space between the reinforced glass on the surface and the backsheet on the underside of a solar cell. It fulfills the function of protecting the solar cell over long periods in harsh outdoor conditions.
*DuPont(TM) Tedlar(R) PVF is a registered trademark of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company or its affiliates.