Wacker Chemie AG

WACKER builds new production facility for granular solar polysilicon in Burghausen

- First commercial-scale production of granular polysilicon for the solar industry - New facility's nominal capacity set for 650 metric tons per year, with capex of approx. €40 million - New production technology enables processing advantages and boosts energy efficiency

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capital investment

Munich / Burghausen (euro adhoc) - July 16, 2007 - WACKER intends to build a new granular-polysilicon production facility for the solar industry at its Burghausen site in Germany. The Munich-based chemical Group announced the decision today. With annual nominal capacity of 650 metric tons, the new facility is expected to come on stream by the end of 2008. It will manufacture granular solar-grade polysilicon from trichlorosilane using the so-called fluidized-bed technology. Granular polysilicon offers processing advantages to solar-wafer manufacturers that employ certain production techniques, thereby supplementing WACKER´s existing product portfolio for the photovoltaics industry. WACKER successfully tested its new method in pilot reactors over the past 2½ years and is now initiating first-ever commercial-scale production.

"With commercial manufacture of granular polysilicon from trichlorosilane, WACKER underscores its innovation and technology leadership in this sector," explained Ewald Schindlbeck, president of WACKER POLYSILICON. "Tests by customers who manufacture solar wafers (the starting material for solar cells) via continuous crystallization show that processing granular polysilicon is far more efficient than conventional techniques using polysilicon chunks. Moreover, the comparatively low energy consumption vis-à-vis conventional deposition positively impacts the energy balance of solar cells. Another advantage of our new method lies in the high yield provided by trichlorosilane as a feedstock."

For over 50 years, WACKER´s Burghausen site has been producing hyperpure polycrystalline silicon for the semiconductor industry. With rising solar-silicon demand, WACKER POLYSILICON has been expanding capacity step by step and, since 2000, increasingly supplying the photovoltaics industry. The division is currently the world´s second-largest polysilicon producer.

This press release contains forward-looking statements based on assumptions and estimates of WACKER´s Executive Board. Although we assume the expectations in these forward-looking statements are realistic, we cannot guarantee they will prove to be correct. The assumptions may harbor risks and uncertainties that may cause the actual figures to differ considerably from the forward-looking statements. Factors that may cause such discrepancies include, among other things, changes in the economic and business environment, variations in exchange and interest rates, the introduction of competing products, lack of acceptance for new products or services, and changes in corporate strategy. WACKER does not plan to update the forward-looking statements, nor does it assume the obligation to do so.

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ots Originaltext: Wacker Chemie AG
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.presseportal.ch

Further inquiry note:
Christof Bachmair
Media Relations & Information
Tel.: +49 (0)89 6279 1830
E-Mail: christof.bachmair@wacker.com

Branche: Chemicals
ISIN:      DE000WCH8881
WKN:        WCH888
Index:    CDAX, Classic All Share, HDAX, MDAX, Midcap Market Index,
              Prime All Share
Börsen:  Börse Frankfurt / official dealing/prime standard

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