Santa Clara-based Applied Materials said today that it has agreed to acquired HCT Shaping Systems SA, a supplier of precision wafering systems. The deal is worth approximately $475M. HCT's equipment is used for the manufacturing of crystalline silicon (C-Si) substrates for the solar industry. According to Applied Materials, the acquisition is part of its effort to reduce the costs of photovoltaic (PV) cell manufacturing. HCT Shaping Systems SA is based in Switzerland.