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Spire Solar Chicago Achieves UL Listing and First Sale of Clear Modules.

Business Editors/Environment Writers/High-Tech Writers


Spire Corporation (Nasdaq: SPIR), which provides products and services, based upon a common technology platform, to the Solar Energy and Biomedical industries worldwide, today announced that Spire Solar Chicago, a unit of Spire Corporation, has introduced a clear back sheet version of its 75-watt photovoltaic panel. The clear back sheet allows light to pass translucently through the rows of cells, adding a new dimension of style to the modules and their design applications. The modules recently passed rigorous environmental and safety testing by the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) and the Arizona State University's Photovoltaic Test Laboratory. In addition to obtaining UL listing, the modules were also qualified to international stability and performance standards, successfully passing IEC 61215 testing.

Steve Hogan, Spire Solar, Inc.'s Executive Vice President and General Manager, stated, "The addition of a clear module to our product line allows Spire Solar Chicago to address the special needs of architects and engineers interested in incorporating photovoltaic modules in building applications, known as Building Integrated Photovoltaics ("BIPV"). The UL listing on the modules allows designers to implement the unique characteristics safely into applications. Spire is proud of its ability to respond to the special market demands so elegantly exhibited in our Chicago market."

The clear modules will be featured on two new construction developments in Chicago, Sheffield Green Condominiums in Lakeview and Bethel New Life's Lake Pulaski Commercial Center on the City's West Side. Farr Associates designed both buildings with features that minimize environmental impact and operating costs. Kevin Pierce, architect and principal of Farr Associates, stated, "For our Bethel Commercial Center project, the clear back sheet PV panels turn the product from a utilitarian energy producer into a real design element. The PV cornices shade the building with dappled light and will be visible to pedestrians below."

In addition to solar power generation, Sheffield Green Condominiums feature passive heating and cooling and recycled and environmentally responsible building materials. Developer Garret Obluck said, "In a market like Lakeview, buyers are looking for design features that really stand out. Not only do the clear solar awnings make a design statement, they make a lifestyle statement: you don't have to choose one over the other. The Sheffield Green Condominiums prove that style is enhanced by features like solar, which attract buyers who want their homes to reflect the values that are important to them."

Funding beyond the private investment of the developers for these projects comes from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity's Renewable Energy Resource Program and the ComEd Photovoltaic Incentive Program.

In addition to the clear back sheets, Spire Solar Chicago offers powder-coated frames in a variety of colors to fit architectural and design requirements. Spire Solar Chicago manufactures modules in the Chicago Center for Green Technology, recently designated a Platinum level building by the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED(TM) rating system. The Center was also named one of the top ten green projects in 2002 by the American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment. Spire Solar Chicago is a partner in the Chicago Solar Partnership and an active member in the Chicago Chapters of the U.S. Green Building Council, the Homebuilders Association of Greater Chicago and the AIA.

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Certain matters described in this news release may be forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the risk of dependence on market growth, competition and dependence on government agencies and other third parties for funding contract research and services, as well as other factors described in the Company's Form 10-KSB filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 13, 2003
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