Visit to Plant

Extra-high-voltage Solar Plant Operating on North-facing Slope

Almost no weeds even after 2 yrs of operation

2019/06/12 13:34
Kenji Kaneko, Nikkei BP Intelligence Group, CleanTech Labo
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Enters 'on-ground solar plant business' following FIT scheme implementation

Hijimachi in Oita Prefecture, Japan, is located on the coast of Beppu Bay in the southern Kunisaki Peninsula. As its name in Japanese indicates, a beautiful sunrise from Beppu Bay can be viewed from the high hills in the town.

Hijimachi is the home town to Hijidenki Co Ltd, the area's representative medium-sized electric engineering company that logged annual sales of 3.8 billion yen (fiscal 2017) with 30 employees. Having approached, at an early stage, marketing and construction of all-electric houses and solar power generation systems for houses, the company embarked on designing and constructing on-ground-type solar power plants as well as running the power selling business in the wake of the feed-in tariff (FIT) scheme in Japan.

Hijidenki has provided design, procurement and construction (EPC) services to solar power plants with a total output of more than 120MW primarily in Oita Prefecture while undertaking operation and maintenance (O&M) services for solar plants equivalent to about 110MW. Of the 110MW, the projects that Hijidenki owns and runs for the power selling business account for roughly 50MW.

By scale, "commercial low-voltage solar plants" connected with low-voltage power grids, "high-voltage projects" connected with 6.6kV high-voltage power grids and "extra-high-voltage projects" connected with extra-high-voltage power grids total about 700, 40 and one, respectively.

The "Hijidenki Solar Park Fujiwara Yurino Power Plant" completed in the mountains of northern Hijimachi in February 2017 was the company's first "extra-high-voltage project." Hijidenki constructed and owns the plant by itself and sells the power (Fig. 1).

Fig. 1: Hijidenki Solar Park Fujiwara Yurino Power Plant faces Beppu Bay. (source: Nikkei BP)