Solar Frontier has begun construction of a megasolar plant that uses mountings made from lumber, an unusual occurrence in Japan. The plant is scheduled to begin generating power in May 2015.
The project in the Yatsushiro region of Kumamoto Prefecture is being undertaken by SF Solar Power, a company jointly founded by Solar Frontier and the Development Bank of Japan (DBJ). The plant will leverage knowhow about wooden mountings from Xyence, the leaseholder and a specialist in wood preservation technology. The wooden mountings, made of Japanese timber, will comprise about 20% of all the mountings at the power plant facility.
High resistance to salt air damage and low thermal conductivity were important factors in choosing wooden mountings for this project. These characteristics will result in less damage from salt air in coastal areas and the effects of snow melting agents. The wooden mountings also offer better resistance to the effects of heat under strong sun conditions. In addition, once the domestically sourced lumber has been dismantled at the end of its life, it can be used to power woody biomass power plants, thereby reducing the project’s environmental impact.
Quality, durability and safety have been assured by using mountings and coupling techniques specifically designed for Solar Frontier’s thin-film CIS modules and through third-party performance evaluation tests by the Center for Better Living.
By leveraging its CIS thin-film solar modules and construction techniques that result in high power output in real operating conditions, Solar Frontier will continue to build sustainable and environmentally friendly solar power plants such as this unique project.
Outline of SF Solar Power Yatsushiro Power Plant
Location: Shinminatomachi, Yatsushiro City, Kumamoto Prefecture
Site area: Approximately 19,000 m2
Capacity: 1,400 kW
Number of solar modules: 8,160
Estimated annual power output: 1,631,000 kWh