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Nanosolar to set sights on residential market

The thin-film solar maker sees the municipal utility market as promising, but residential systems are in the "near term" plan.

There's been an explosion in the number of solar companies over the past few years. But for the most part, product development is destined for power plants operated by utilities.

That won't always be the case, however, says Nanosolar CEO Martin Roscheisen, who wrote in a blog that the company will eventually serve the home rooftop market.

Nanosolar CEO Martin Roscheisen with company panels. Nanosolar

Nanosolar is a well-funded Silicon Valley solar manufacturer that started making thin-film solar cells and modules late last year. The first customer is a utility in east Germany.

In a recent blog, Roscheisen described why the company is targeting utilities first and argued that small municipal solar power plants offer good growth prospects.

VentureBeat wrote a roundup of the several solar companies developing technology for relatively small power plants, on the scale of 2 to 10 megawatts.

But in an update, Roscheisen added that the utility route can ultimately benefit consumers looking for lower-priced solar installations.

"To all those of you who are disappointed that our first product is not for residential homeowners, we can reassure you that we do have a fabulous residential solution on our near-term road map--one that will bring the utility scale economics of Nanosolar Utility to homes everywhere and completely redefine how residential solar is done," he wrote.