How Will Solyndra's Collapse Affect US Solar Industry?

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The Exterior of bankrupt Solyndra is seen in Fremont, Calif. (AP)
The exterior of bankrupt Solyndra in Fremont, Calif. (AP)

Two top executives at the bankrupt California solar energy company, Solyndra, say they will invoke their Fifth Amendment rights and refuse to answer questions when they appear at a House hearing on Friday. Lawyers for the executives say it would be inappropriate to offer testimony since the company is now the focus of a criminal investigation.

Solyndra received $528 million in federally-backed loans from the Energy Department in 2009 and the company's collapse is raising questions about other DOE investments in American solar companies.

One of those companies, 1366 Technologies of Lexington, Massachusetts, just this month finalized a deal with DOE to receive $150 million in loan guarantees. While the solar industry is booming, some experts are concerned that American solar companies will face an uphill battle competing against Chinese companies that receive huge government subsidies.


  • Frank van Mierlo, president of 1366 Technologies Inc.
  • Erik Sherman, BNET high tech reporter

This segment aired on September 21, 2011.


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