First Solar, Inc. is a leading American manufacturer of solar panels and a provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions. The company designs and manufactures solar modules using advanced thin film technology, which allows them to produce high-performance modules with a smaller environmental footprint. First Solar was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, with manufacturing facilities in the United States, Malaysia, and Vietnam.
First Solar became a public company in November 2006, when it completed its initial public offering (IPO) of 20 million shares of common stock on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. The IPO raised $400 million in gross proceeds, making it the largest IPO in the renewable energy sector at that time. Since then, the company's stock has been listed on the NASDAQ and has been included in the S&P 500 index.
First Solar's modules are used in a variety of solar energy applications, from large-scale utility projects to residential and commercial rooftop installations. The company also offers a range of services to its customers, including project development, financing, engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) services, and operations and maintenance (O&M) services.
The company's thin film technology is based on a cadmium telluride (CdTe) semiconductor, which offers a number of advantages over other solar technologies, including higher energy yields in hot and humid conditions, better low-light performance, and lower manufacturing costs. In addition, First Solar's modules have a low carbon footprint, as they require less water, energy, and raw materials to manufacture compared to traditional crystalline silicon modules.