Solar power modules maker Energy Conversion Devices Inc. is being guarded about its outlook for 2009 as the credit crunch and economic recession restrains funding for solar energy projects.

Energy Conversion's Chief Executive Officer Mark Morelli said the near term market will be tough as the industry remains uncertain of the economy.

We're being somewhat guarded on the second half because we were a bit optimistic coming into the New Year ... We don't know when the financing will come back, we just hope it will come back, Morelli said at the Reuters Global Energy Summit today, according to the news agency.

Energy Conversion has been hit by the credit crisis, seeing its fiscal third quarter profit decline as much as 81 percent as demand drops. The company is taking a different approach, using its own funding for projects on a selected basis to be able to sell into the market, Morelli said according to Reuters.

Morelli noted the U.S. solar market is very slow and doesn't hope to see the impact from the stimulus package funds into clean energy until next year. However he has expectations the U.S. can be a large market.

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Energy said it would restructure its system to quickly disperse stimulus package funds.

The department said it wanted to use up 70 percent of funds from the $65 billion package destined for clean energy and energy efficiency by the end of 2010.

Included were $6 billion granted for loan guarantees for renewable energy power generation and transmission projects.