Canadian Manufacturing

Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. solar panel maker Heliene gets scale-up funds from feds

The company plans to buy a new automated soldering machine with the $199,000 FedNor investment


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SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont.—A Northern Ontario solar panel manufacturer is getting a federal government loan to help it boost capacity and cut costs.

Heliene Inc., which makes photovoltaic modules at its plant in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., will receive $199,000 from Ottawa’s FedNor program to buy a new automated soldering machine. The new piece of equipment will add to the company’s highly-automated facility and help maintain 70 jobs at the site.

The project is intended to boost productivity at Heliene and make the company more competitive in the tight-margin solar manufacturing industry.

The nearly $200,000 loan follows a $1.45 million Sustainable Development Technology Canada investment in an ongoing smart grid research project at the Sault Ste. Marie cleantech firm this June.


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