SEOUL, March 14 (Korea Bizwire) — Hanwha Solutions Corp. said Tuesday it has appointed an executive of GE Renewable Energy as its new chief technology officer (CTO) in a move to accelerate research and development in next-generation solar, wind and other renewable energy.
Danielle Merfeld, vice president and chief technology officer at GE Renewable Energy, a subsidiary of General Electric Co., will take over as the global CTO at Hanwha Q Cells, the solar panel unit of Hanwha Solutions, the South Korean company said.
Merfeld will be in charge of Q Cells’ global R&D network connecting South Korea, the United States and Germany to integrate Hanwha’s R&D capabilities to further bolster their tech competitiveness in solar panels.
Merfeld will steer the “tandem cell technology” development, a R&D project funded by the European Union aimed at developing the next generation solar cells for production at a commercial scale starting in 2026.
The project plans to build a pilot line at Q Cells’ European headquarters in Thalheim, Bitterfeld-Wolfen, southwest of Berlin, where its R&D center is also located.
Hanwha Q Cells is investing US$2.5 billion to expand its solar panel manufacturing capacity in the U.S., seeking to take advantage of the Inflation Reduction Act that gives subsidies to clean energy companies investing in the U.S.
Before working at GE Renewable Energy, Merfeld was the vice president and general manager at GE Global Research.
She has a degree in electrical engineering from the University of Notre Dame and a Ph.D. in the same field from Northwestern University.