Mega-solar Power Plant Plagued by Vines
Picket-based panel installation changed to foundation-based method
"Sun Factory Hiyama Hitachiota Solar Power Plant", located at an industrial site in Hitachiota City, Ibaraki Prefecture, which started operation in April 2013, is a mega (large-scale) solar power plant built by Nippon Comsys Corp (Fig. 1). Each of its two blocks, dubbed A site and B site, which is across the road, has a 990kW power generation system. The power producer is Comsys Create Corp (Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo), which is aiming at creating new businesses in the Comsys Holdings Group.
Since it was known as Nippon Telecommunications Construction Co Ltd, Nippon Comsys has been establishing communication infrastructures, laying on telecom cables and constructing switching facilities and radio relay base stations targeting the NTT Group. It has been working on the contracted construction of solar power generation systems since around 2003.
Power producer Comsys Create was established in May 2012 with the aim of creating new businesses by making the most of technologies and expertise accumulated within the Comsys Group. Currently, its mainstay is the solar power selling business based on the feed-in tariff (FIT) scheme for renewable energy; however, Comsys Create is still exploring entry into other markets apart from energy-related ones.
Comsys Group's 1st asset-based business
The mega-solar power plant business has advanced with Comsys Create developing the project as a power producer and Nippon Comsys providing the EPC (engineering, procurement and construction), operation and maintenance services. Starting from Hitachiota Solar Power Plant, the 2MW "Showa Sennennomori Solar Power Plant" in Showamura, Tone Gun, Gunma Prefecture, and another 2MW "Tsu Solar Power Plant" in Tsu City, Mie Prefecture, started operation in November 2013. The Comsys Group also started constructing another mega-solar power plant in Kitaibaraki City, Ibaraki Prefecture (See related article) in February 2014, with the operation slated to start in November of the same year.
The construction of all these mega-solar power plants has been financed by loans within the group. The Comsys Group said it is planning to procure the funding by loans within the group for the time being though some banks and lease companies have come up with loan and lease proposals.
Case abandoned because of Agricultural Land Act
Hitachiota Solar Power Plant was constructed on idle land leased by Hiyama Industry Co Ltd (Hitachi City, Ibaraki Prefecture), a company that processes films and metals as well as manufactures coating products. The project started when Hiyama Industry was introduced while the Comsys Group was visiting another site.
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