Japan has abundant dams and reservoirs, which attract many companies to promote solar power plant built on the surface of water.
At Yamakura Dam, which is using industrial water supply in Chiba prefecture, a solar power plant using Kyocera’s solar panels on the surface of the reservoir of the dam will begin operating.
“The reservoir of the dam has a surface area of about 60 hectares. A solar power plant using solar panels has been built on 30 per cent of the area, amounting to 18 hectares. The power plant will generate 13.7 MW of electricity. It will be the largest water-surface solar panel power plant in Japan. Because of what we learned from the Japan Tohoku Earthquake, we were considering places where renewable energy sources can be set up and operated using the prefecture owned facilities,” said Kouichi Ishige, Deputy Director General of Industrial Water Department, Chiba Prefectural Waterworks Bureau.
Kyocera was selected as the constructor and operator because of its past construction of the world’s largest solar power plant on the surface of water.
“There are 50,904 solar panels installed on the water sitting on floats. These floats are filled with air to keep the panels above the surface of the water. To keep the connected panels stationary so that they do not move about on the surface of the water when wind, waves or any external factors occur, we have anchored the entire circumference of the solar island to the bottom of the dam and connect the anchor and float with wire so as to maintain the position of the solar island on the surface of the water,” said Harutaka Noda, Deputy Division Manager of Kyocera Communication Systems Co., Ltd.
Using water from the reservoir of a dam, the solar island would also serve to block sunlight, suppress the generation of algae, and improve the quality of water.