According to a news release, the layoffs are in response to a significant oversupply in the polysilicone industry and the threat of protective tariffs on its product sold into China.
One hundred employees at Hemlock's Michigan plant are also losing their jobs.
Hemlock Semiconductor began operations in Hemlock, Michigan in 1961 and is one of the world's leading suppliers of polycrystalline silicon, a material used in solar technology.
The company broke ground on its Clarksville plant in 2009 and construction of the $1.2 billion facility is nearly complete.
Should market conditions persist, the layoffs could become permanent.
"This is a difficult but necessary decision to enable Hemlock Semiconductor to navigate the volatility in the polysilicon and solar industries," Andrew Tometich, president of Hemlock Semiconductor, said of layoffs.
Hemlock Semiconductor's Michigan site will continue to reduce production to align with current customer demand.
The Tennessee facility will maintain a minimum workforce focused on safely maintaining the site for eventual production.
A number of factors will impact the exact timing of the start-up of the facility, including customer demand and resolution of the trade disputes.
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