Linton Crystal brings solar equipment back to the US

Linton Crystal brings solar equipment back to the US

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

Linton Crystal Technologies (LCT) is to bring production of its semiconductor and solar manufacturing equipment back to the US.

The company is headquartered in Rochester, New York, but Chinese owned. This is the first announcement for producing solar machine tools in the US as a result of funding from the Inflation Reduction Act related. LCT plans to break ground in Q2 2023 with an initial $10m investment.

“As a US company with Chinese ownership, Linton Technologies Group, the geopolitical issues have been difficult to navigate. Our company used to manufacture in Rochester and we’re eager to get back to the United States,” said Todd Barnum, president and CEO of Linton Crystal Technologies.

“We’ve been working on this plan for a while now and are looking forward to reshoring manufacturing to the United States.” 

A suitable site still has to be located, with future plans for expansion to accommodate international orders as necessary. Linton is also developing an international service team to support customers worldwide as the industry looks to grow and improve processes and efficiency.

The company will establish a manufacturing centre to build and demonstrate the full line of equipment represented by Linton Technologies Group. This includes Czochralski (CZ) furnaces for monocrystalline silicon ingots, both semiconductor and solar grade, and the machines for producing solar ingots and wafers, including wire saws and polishing equipment. Linton will be the first company to return this technology to the United States.

Linton’s initial investment of $10m will be used to add a new facility, establish a demonstration line, and build 1-2 gigawatts of production capacity, all by the end of year one. This will grow the company’s workforce to more than 75 employees.

“The IRA and CHIPS Act have created the pathway for manufacturing investment to fulfill the need for US-made products. We’re going to meet that demand and we have the expertise to scale rapidly,” he said.

Linton Crystal Technologies has a long history of manufacturing innovation. The company originated in Rochester in 1952 as a wire saw manufacturer, Hamco, and through a series of purchases became Kayex, a manufacturer of CZ crystal pullers. Linton has been the exclusive owner of Kayex technology since 2013 and the IP resides with LCT in the US.

The company also continues to advance the design of the machines. It holds several patents, with others under application.

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