Tesla, Panasonic to Build Solar Panels in Upstate NY

By Features PCmag

Tesla and Panasonic have partnered for the production of solar panels at a new facility in Buffalo, New York.

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The agreement—a non-binding letter of intent—hinges on the approval of Tesla's $2.6 billion acquisition of SolarCity, expected in the fourth quarter of this year. According to Tesla, the companies will manufacture and produce photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules for use in a solar energy system intended for Tesla's Powerwall (pictured) and Powerpack energy storage products.

Panasonic is scheduled to begin production in upstate New York next year.

"By working together on solar, we will be able to accelerate production of high-efficiency, extremely reliable solar cells and modules at the best cost," Tesla Chief Technical Officer JB Straubel said in a statement.

The luxury car maker in June made a bid to buy Silicon Valley startup SolarCity, with the aim of using the alternative energy source as a primary charging capacity for Tesla's electric cars.

Shareholders are due to vote on the acquisition on Nov. 17, The New York Times says. If accepted, SolarCity's operations will be completely integrated into Tesla. For consumers, that means a seamless electric car shopping experience—buying an EV and home solar charger in one place.

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The two companies joined forces in July 2014 when Tesla announced plans to build a large-scale battery manufacturing plant known as the Gigafactory. Tesla will prepare, provide, and manage the land, buildings, and utilities, while Panasonic is expected to manufacture and supply the cylindrical lithium-ion cells. The Japanese electronics maker will also invest in associated equipment, machinery, and other manufacturing tools.

This article originally appeared on PCMag.com.