Plant to build high-end solar panels opens in Ponsford

A production plant for solar panels is opening in the Pine Point area, and it held an open house and job fair Thursday for people from Pine Point and surrounding communities who want to get involved.

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Called 8th Fire Solar, the new company will begin producing the most efficient and economical high-performance solar air heating panels in the nation, according to Pam Mahling, special projects director for Honor the Earth. “We’re trying to build a local and sustainable economy,” she said.

Built to withstand even the coldest climates, the solar products have the best Btu-per-dollar ratio on the market.

The company will target the commercial and home market, and hopes to help reduce the energy poverty in native communities.

“We raised money and purchased property in Ponsford — a shop, a house and an old town hall,” Mahling said. “We did build an addition to the shop, put in a new septic system and three-phase power — it was a pretty big project,” she said, thanking the Northwest Area Foundation and the Otto Bremer Foundation for their support.

The solar panels will be built in the shop building.

“One hundred panels (the first year) is our goal, based on our business plan — obviously we hope to expand from there,” she said. The company hopes to quickly establish a national dealer network.

The company didn’t just pull its products out of thin air. In 2017, 8th Fire Solar entered into a licensing and technology transfer partnership with the non-profit, and well-regarded, Rural Renewable Energy Alliance (RREAL) in Backus, Minn., to make 8th Fire Solar a reality. 

For full article, go to: DLOnline

Source, image(s), credits & more: DLOnline | Nathan Bowe