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Number of Sheep Increased to Boost Weeding Efficiency at Solar Plant (page 5)

Herbicide used proactively in areas with no sheep

2019/06/17 17:01
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP Intelligence Group, CleanTech Labo
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Large-scale PV inverter inspection and maintenance in 5th year

The year 2018 was the plant's fifth year since it began operation. In accordance with the business plan, Nikke overhauled the interior of 30 PV inverters at the Phase 1 and 2 areas. As this was first large-scale Nikke's first inspection, it was conducted in accordance with recommendations by the manufacturer of the PV inverters.

Although it turned out there were no serious malfunctions in this inspection, the PV inverters were more worn than expected, and the company even replaced some components.

The PV inverters are inspected every year in August. The company tries to minimize power selling loss even during the inspection period of five to seven days, starting inspection from early in the morning when the weather is bad and as late as possible on a sunny day, for example.

PV inverters are housed in a strong concrete hut (Fig. 7). Unlike metal facilities seen at many mega-solar plants, Nikke housed the PV inverters in a concrete hut.

Fig. 7: Concrete hut to house PV inverters. Equipped with a conductor rod and solar panels on rooftop (source: Nikkei BP)

Nikke built this concrete hut from a prudent perspective, taking into consideration the influence of heat and dust. Solar panels were also set up on its roof. The power generated through these solar panels is also counted as part of the power generated at the mega-solar plant.

In addition, some conductor rods have been set up on this hut and around the grid connection facility (Fig. 8). This is unusual for a mega-solar power plant in Japan. Nikke has taken more vigilant measures against lightning compared with other general mega-solar plants.

Fig. 8: Multiple conductor rods set up around grid connection facility (source: Nikkei BP)

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