Japan Built Its Largest Floating Solar Photovoltaic Farm

Japan Built Its Largest Floating Solar Photovoltaic Farm

Japan's largest floating solar photovoltaic farm, with an electricity generation capacity of 13.7MW, has been built on a reservoir in Japan's Chiba prefecture and is expected to be put into use in March, 2018.

A few days ago, organized by Foreign Press Center Japan (FPCJ), reporters from different countries visited the power plant. The Yamakura dam power plant sees 50,904 floating solar photovoltaic panels cover an area of 180,000 square meter, accounting for one third of the total area of the reservoir and 15,000 m² land area. It was anticipated to annually supply electricity for nearly 5,000 households and reduce carbon dioxide by about 8,000 tons when it was put into use in March, 2018.

PIC: Japan's Largest Floating Solar Power Farm (Photo by Xinhua)

According to reports, the floating solar farm was developed and operated by the Japanese electronics multinational Kyocera and Tokyo Century Corporation (TCL). Dam Mania (ダムマニア) is an industrial water reservoir managed by the Chiba Prefectural Waterworks Bureau. Kyocera, TCL and Chiba prefectural government signed a 20-year leasing deal for the development of the power plant, and sold all the produced electricity to Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) for 32 yen (1.87 yuan) per kilowatt hour (kWh), which is the current purchase price set by the Japanese government.

With its facilities fixed on the water, the floating solar plant can withstand strong winds and waves, say, the typhoon that struck Japan the other day did not do any damage to it. The construction cost of floating solar power farms is similar to that of ordinary ones. The power plant effectively exploits water area and helps to reduce water evaporation and control algae growth. Additionally, water's cooling effect increases the power generation efficiency of solar panels. At the same time, for being an industrial water reservoir, Dam Mania will not be used for aquaculture.

At the end of 2014, Kyocera announced that it would work on what it said would be the world's biggest floating solar photovoltaic farm. However, the power plant is smaller than the new-built two plants with a capacity of 20MW and 40MW respectively in China as the country vigorously develops similar projects. (Editor: Claire Jeawin)

PIC: FPCJ Organizing Foreign Correspondents in Japan to Visit the Farm (Photo by Xinhua Reporter Hua Yi)