First Solar plans to invest approximately USD 270 million in a dedicated research and development innovation center in Perrysburg in Ohio. The new facility is believed to be the first of its scale in the United States and is expected to accelerate American leadership in the development and production of advanced thin film photovoltaics.The new R&D center will be located near First Solar’s existing Perrysburg manufacturing facility, covering an area of approximately 1.3 million square feet. It will feature a high-tech pilot manufacturing line allowing for the production of full-sized prototypes of thin film and tandem PV modules. Contigent upon permitting and pending approval of various state, regional and local incentives, the facility is expected to be completed in 2024.First Solar, which has already invested over $1.5 billion in R&D, currently operates a dual purpose manufacturing line at its Perrysburg facility which handles both commercial production of solar modules and the company’s product development efforts. The line, however, cannot handle both activities simultaneously.