NSG Pilkington North America has ignited the furnace at its greenfield Luckey, Ohio, USA plant.

The official lighting ceremony took place yesterday at the 500,000ft2 facility.

The facility has a melting capacity of 600 tons per day conductive oxide (TCO) coated glass to supply the solar market.

The lighting was officially conducted by Richard Altman, Regional Director for Architectural Glass and Solar at NSG Pilkington.

He said it was a momentous day for NSG.

He said: “This project represents a key milestone for us in our strategy of growing our business by meeting the unique requirements of our customers and making sure we are adding value to their businesses.

“Specifically this 500,000ft2 is site is part of an overall $380 million investment by NSG to support the growing solar market that our business had the opportunity to serve.”

The facility has created 150 new jobs as well as several jobs in the construction sector during the building of the plant.

Luckey Plant Manager Dan Knecht it was 'an amazing achievement to get to the point where we are today.'

"We certainly didn’t do it alone we did it with a lot of collaboration and teamwork from many partners."

He paid tribute to the Luckey staff and said: "Without their hard work and sacrifice we wouldn’t be where we are today.

"There is a lot more sacrificing to do so I thank you in advance for your contributions and we are looking forward to the next phase of this."

The event was live streamed on the NSG group's Facebook page.

An exclusive interview with Todd Huffman, Overall Project Manager - Solar Projects at NSG is available in the October issue of Glass International. The facility was built with the collaboration with project partner, TECO.