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ECD ANNOUNCES USSC JOINT VENTURE TO BUILD WORLD'S LARGEST MULTI-JUNCTION SOLAR PANEL MANUFACTURING PLANT

 WASHINGTON, April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. ("ECD") (OTC: ENER) announced today that its photovoltaic joint venture with Canon Inc. ("Canon") (NASDAQ-NMS: CANNY), United Solar Systems Corp. ("USSC"), will begin construction this year in Newport News, Va., on the world's largest manufacturing facility for amorphous silicon alloy based multi-junction photovoltaic (solar) panels that convert light into electricity. USSC, an American company based in Troy, Mich., was formed by ECD and Canon in July 1990 and is engaged in manufacture, sales and development of solar panels and systems.
 The Vice President of the United States Al Gore, in a letter to Stanford R. Ovshinsky, president and CEO of ECD, expressing his pleasure on the building of the large-volume production plant, said: "I appreciate your efforts in the construction of a new 10 megawatt photovoltaic manufacturing plant here in the United States which will help make solar energy a viable and affordable source of energy, not only for our citizens, but for people around the world."
 Ovshinsky said: "With the large volume production scheduled for the new USSC facility in Newport News, and the technological advances incorporated into the process, USSC has taken a major step in making photovoltaic energy cost competitive with conventional sources of energy."
 Mr. Shin-ichiro Nagashima, president and CEO of USSC, said that USSC expected the plant to be operational by the end of 1994 and to create more than 300 new jobs by 1995, representing an investment in excess of $30 million by USSC.
 He also expressed his appreciation to the Commonwealth of Virginia for all its help in providing USSC with information and guidance that helped USSC in making its decision to locate in Virginia.
 The 85,000 square foot plant will be located on land adjacent to Canon Virginia, Inc. in Newport News. The facility will manufacture photovoltaic panels and systems at a capacity of 10 megawatts per year. The plant will use thin-film amorphous silicon alloy multi-junction technology to obtain high conversion efficiency at a low cost.
 The key manufacturing features of the new plant include: the use of a triple-cell structure of different bandgaps to capture sunlight more effectively, thereby increasing the efficiency of light to electricity conversion; the use of a roll-to-roll production method in which the different layers of the solar cells are deposited continuously on a 2,500-foot roll of stainless steel; and the use of a unique high-rate deposition technology in which some of the semiconductor layers will be deposited at a rate of 100 angstrom per second, which is approximately 20 times faster than that obtained by conventional technology.
 Photovoltaic systems generate clean, nonpolluting energy and have been receiving worldwide attention because of the pollution and environmental problems caused by conventional sources of energy.
 ECD, based in Troy, Mich., is the pioneer in amorphous and synthetic materials technology. It manufactures, forms joint ventures and licenses its technology in the fields of energy, information and synthetic materials. ECD's energy products are environmentally safe and address environmental problems such as dependency on fossil fuels, atmospheric pollution, depletion of the ozone layer disposal of hazardous wastes and the greenhouse effect.
 Canon, based in Tokyo, Japan, is a leading international mannufacturer of office equipment, photographic and optical products.
 -0- 4/20/93
 /CONTACT: Masat Izu, Vice President of Film Technology, Energy Conversion Devices, Inc., 313-280-1900/
 (ECD CANNY)


CO: Energy Conversion Devices, Inc.; Canon Inc.;
 United Solar Systems Corp. ST: Michigan, Virginia IN: SU: JVN


ML -- DE020 -- 8080 04/20/93 12:38 EDT
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Date:Apr 20, 1993
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