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Panasonic HIT history

Since 1975, first under the brand SANYO and since 2012 under the brand Panasonic, we have been a pioneer of the photovoltaic technology. Here you can find some milestones of our involvement with solar energy.

Investing in photovoltaic modules is a long-term commitment. Ideally a solar module has a life span of 25 years and over. That makes the relationship with your PV manufacturer almost as durable as the one with your life partner. In order to keep this relationship successful and enjoyable, your PV manufacturer needs to be a partner you can rely on. With 42 years of expertise and experience, Panasonic Solar is a pioneer and technology leader with a unique track record in reliability.

 

1975 SANYO starts development of solar cells from amorphous silicon.
1980 SANYO is the first manufacturer worldwide to commercially produce solar cells made of amorphous silicon.
1992 SANYO is the first manufacturer in Japan to equip residential buildings with photovoltaic systems that generate energy to be fed into the power grid.
1994 Market introduction of photovoltaic systems for private use on residential dwellings.
1997 SANYO Solar Cells with Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-layer technology enter serial production. They are marketed under the brand name HIT®.
Market introduction of 170 W Solar Modules.
Cell efficiency ratio: 16.4%; Module efficiency ratio: 14.4%.
1998 Market introduction of 180 W Photovoltaic Modules.
Cell efficiency ratio: 17.4%; Module efficiency ratio: 15.2%.
2001 Completion of the world’s largest solar power plant on the site of the SANYO facility in Gifu: the SANYO Solar Ark.
2002 Market introduction of the 190 W Photovoltaic Module. Cell efficiency ratio: 18.5%; Module efficiency ratio: 16.1%
2003 SANYO enhances the market with 200 W Photovoltaic Modules with the world’s highest efficiency ratio.
The Nishikinohama (Osaka Prefecture) factory is built for the production of Photovoltaic Cells / Modules.
2005 The SANYO factory in Hungary begins serial production of HIT®.
2007 SANYO exceeds the 100 million mark in the production of HIT®. Cell efficiency ratio in Research and Development: 22.3%. 
Expansion of the Hungary facility for the production of the HIT HD Modules.
Market introduction of the 215 W Photovoltaic Modules. Cell efficiency ratio: 19.3%; Module efficiency ratio: 17.2%.
2008 SANYO introduces the HDE1 product line: Unique honeycomb design is the result of technological developments for the utilisation of silicon reserves.
2009 SANYO introduces the high performance 220 Watt HIT® to the European market.
At 17.4%, the SANYO HIT® had the world’s highest efficiency ratio.
2010 SANYO introduces new high performance 235 Watt HIT®, to the European market.
At 18.6%, the SANYO HIT® has at that moment the world’s highest efficiency ratio.
2011 In February, SANYO launches its 240 W Module with a cell efficieny of 21,6 %.
In October, Tokay University Solar Car Team won the 2011 World Solar Championship in Australia. The winning car profited from the highest energy conversion rate supplied by HIT®.
2012 In April  the brand for our solar modules changed from “SANYO“ to “Panasonic“ in Europe. The change applied to the brand name only. There was no change to the sales structure and the modules continued to be manufactured at the same production bases as before.
Panasonic built a new company in Malaysia to serve as the new solar manufacturing base for Asia. Panasonic invests 45 billion yen in the facility, which is to start operation in December 2012 with an annual production capacity of 300 MW.
That year, the new Black Back Sheet modules are released on the European market, offering an aesthetic choice for houseowners.
2013 April sees the largest on-roof installation in Turkey being equipped with HIT®. The installation then goes on to surprise its owner with an energy yield exceeding the forecast by 17% .
2014 Our new, improved Module VBHN245SJ25 comes on the market.
World record in research and development: 25.6% cell efficiency!
And 1 billion of our solar cells were produced!
2015 New compact module VBHN285SJ40 comes on the market.
2016 Extension of European HIT® Product Guarantee to 15 years.
New powerful modules VBHN330SJ47 and VBHN295SJ26 go on sale.
2017 We celebrate 20 Years mass production of our Photovoltaic Module HIT®
Extension of European HIT® Product Guarantee to 25 years.
2018 Panasonic celebrates its 100 year anniversary