Trial production of tandem-junction a-Si thin-film solar cell modules recently began at Hevel Solar’s new production plant in Russia. The turnkey plant was supplied by Oerlikon Solar.

The company is reportedly currently aiming to ramp up production sometime later in the year — with the goal of meeting previously made supply deals for a number of projects, in partnership with the tech giant Rusnano and the state-run construction firm Avelar.

To be exact — Hevel stated that it expected that 200,000 of the solar modules would be produced by the end of the year, for a total construction capacity of over 25 MW.

The new plant reportedly employs 230 or so workers — including 45 from TEL Solar. With the beginning of production at the new plant Hevel Solar now possesses a nameplate capacity of 120 MW.

In related news — the Altai region of Russia will soon be receiving over $147 million worth of new solar PV power plants thanks to the recent signing of a partnership between the state-run construction firm Avelar, Hevel Solar, and the government of the region.

The recent signing adds to the already substantial development pipeline in the region — now totaling around $550 million in investments and 160 MW of capacity.

As we reported previously, given recent announcements by the Russian government the notable development pipeline isn’t exactly surprising. The Russian Ministry of Energy has actually predicted that state and private investment into Russia’s solar industry will climb as high as somewhere around US$ 4.2 billion annually by the year 2020.

Much of this growth is expected to be via state-backed firms like Hevel Solar.