Praxair Inc, through its regional Italian company Rivoira SpA, has been chosen by Silfab SpA as the supplier of gases, gas equipment and gas management services for Silfab's solar grade polysilicon manufacturing facility in Borgofranco d'Ivrea, Italy.

Rivoira will provide the on-site supply of gases as well as gas delivery equipment and management services for the entire project, which will produce 5,000 metric tonnes of solar grade polysilicon per year. The first phase of manufacturing is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2009, with production of 2,500 tpy.

As an experienced supplier to the polysilicon and photovoltaic industries, Praxair offers a complete portfolio of process gases, gas handling and distribution systems, services and deposition materials, to help customers operate efficiently and reliably.

Franco Traverso, Silfab Chairman and Managing Director, said, “Collaboration with partner suppliers is important to our success in providing high quality products to our customers. We believe our relationship with Rivoira is a key component to our supply chain.”

Rivoira SpA, a Praxair subsidiary, has actively participated in the development of the Italian industrial gases business over the last 80 years in collaboration with its customers, producing and marketing industrial, high-purity and specialty gases, medical and refrigerant gases. 2007 sales for the subsidiary stood at around €190m.

Founded in Piemonte by Franco Traverso, Silfab is the first Italian company whose objective is the production of high quality solar grade polysilicon for the photovoltaic market. This material is suitable for the solar cell manufacturers, offering superior quality, at Grade: 9N-, to meet future market requirements.