Now Elon Musk wants to revolutionize solar panel production

Grist

Thanks in part to Elon Musk, the world’s biggest and most advanced solar panel factory could be built in the U.S. in the coming years.

The Silicon Valley entrepreneur, fresh off announcing an effort to spur growth in the electric auto industry by opening up access to hundreds of Tesla Motors patents, on Tuesday pushed the cleantech envelope even further, announcing a bid to massively expand the solar panel industry.

Musk, chair of the solar panel installation giant SolarCity, told reporters that in the coming years the company plans to build a solar panel factory in the U.S. that’s “an order of magnitude bigger than any of the plants that exist” anywhere in the world today.

SolarCity is responsible for about a quarter of America’s residential solar panel installations every month — three times as much as its closest competitor. Its market dominance has been earned in part through its “zero-down” financing model. But that’s not enough. Musk…

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