Construction of 111MW PV Power Plant Begins in Hokkaido

2013/10/08 18:12
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute

SB Energy Corp, which carries on renewable energy businesses in the SoftBank Group, and Mitsui & Co Ltd had a groundbreaking ceremony for the SoftBank Tomatoh Abira Solar Park Oct 7, 2013.

The SoftBank Tomatoh Abira Solar Park is a mega-solar (large-scale photovoltaic (PV)) power plant with a maximum output of about 111MW. It will be built in Toasa, Abira-chou, Yufutsu-gun, Hokkaido. It is scheduled to start power generation in the winter of 2015.

The power plant will be constructed in a 1,660,000m2 land owned by Tomatoh Inc, which is based in Tomakomai City, Hokkaido. And it will be run by Tomatoh Abira Solar Park, a Japan-based fifty-fifty joint venture of SB Energy and Mitsui, which will be an electricity producer.

Toshiba Corp will provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services as well as PV panels. Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corp (TMEIC) will supply power conditioning subsystems (PCSes). And Toshiba Plant Systems & Services Corp will build mounts.

The power generation capacity of the power plant is expected to be 108,014,000kWh, which is equivalent to the amount of electricity consumed by about 30,000 households in a year.

At first, two construction stages were planned for the SoftBank Tomatoh Abira Solar Park. But Hokkaido Electric Power Co Inc (HEPCO) announced in April 2013 that only about 1/4 that of the 2MW or higher maximum output, which was planned to be sold, can be sent to the power grid. And the second construction stage was eliminated.

At the groundbreaking ceremony, many members of the Diet and the Hokkaido Assembly as well as the mayor of Abira-chou said that they expect the power plant to become an icon representing the future of mega-solar businesses as one of the highest capacity PV power plants in Japan.