Tesla, Panasonic to collaborate on producing solar cells for a 1-stop shop

A man stands at the end of a solar panel array as Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell tours a solar project site, Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016, on the Moapa River Indian Reservation about 40 miles northeast of Las Vegas. Jewell was making her third stop on a tour of renewable energy sites around the country. (AP Photo/John Locher)

U.S. electric carmaker Tesla says it plans to start working with Japanese electronics company Panasonic Corp. on solar energy. Tesla said on Monday that the companies have signed a nonbinding letter of intent to begin collaborating on Panasonic's production of photovoltaic cells and modules at a facility under construction by San Mateo, Calif.-based solar-panel company SolarCity Corp. in Buffalo, N.Y. Tesla intends to provide a long-term purchase commitment for those cells from Panasonic.

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.

J.B. Straubel, chief technical officer at Tesla

Tesla CEO Elon Musk says SolarCity's installation network and Tesla's global energy storage could provide customers with a one-stop shop for sustainable energy and transportation. The collaboration extends the partnership between Tesla and Panasonic, which includes the production of electric vehicle and grid storage battery cells at Tesla's Gigafactory. Shareholders are due to vote on the acquisition on Nov. 17.

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Tesla, Panasonic partnership

The agreement is an expansion of a partnership between Tesla and Panasonic, which are jointly building a $5 billion lithium-ion gigafactory in Nevada to produce batteries for the Model 3 electric car and energy storage products for home and utilities.

Tesla Motors

Tesla Motors(often shortened to Tesla) is an American automaker and energy storage company co-founded in July 2003 originally by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning, with JB Straubel, Elon Musk and Ian Wright, and is based in Palo Alto, California.


SolarCity Corporation is an American provider of energy services, headquartered in San Mateo, California. Among its primary services, the company designs, finances and installs solar power systems. The company has over 13,000 employees.SolarCity has grown rapidly to meet the demand for installation of solar photovoltaic systems in the United States.

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