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Solar panel icon files for bankruptcy

  |   Aug. 31, 2011 at 5:47 PM
FREMONT, Calif., Aug. 31 (UPI) -- A U.S. poster child of green technology and a political pit stop for photo opportunities, Solyndra Inc., said Wednesday it was filing for Chapter 11 protection.

The solar panel maker, which received a $535 million loan guarantee from the Treasury Department in March 2009, has been visited by President Barack Obama, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, CNet reported.

Despite the loan guarantee and the positive attention, Solyndra said 1,000 employees would be laid off effective immediately, CNet said.

"Regulatory and policy uncertainties in recent months created significant near-term excess supply and price erosion," Solyndra Chief Executive Officer Brian Harrison said in a statement.

"Raising incremental capital in this environment was not possible. This was an unexpected outcome and is most unfortunate."

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