Japan just completed and launched two massive floating solar power plants.
They will provide electricity to a 1,000 homes without taking any electricity from the grid.
These ‘mega-plants’ are part of an initiative by Japan to increase its reliance on sustainable energy sources in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.
Japan has managed to double its solar capacity in just a few years and is becoming a role model for innovative solar energy solutions.
The solar arrays are built on ponds in Kato City, which is part of the Hyōgo Prefecture of Japan.
The plants only took seven months for energy company Kyocera Corporation, and the Century Tokyo Leasing Corporation to complete and are expected to generate 3,300 megawatt hours (MWh) every year.
The water location provides an advantage for cooling which makes the plant more energy-efficient than if it was built on the land.
“Reservoirs are also an ideal location because the panels produce shade, which reduces water evaporation and promotes algae growth. A report by Korea Water Resources Corporation found that the lower temperatures of the floating modules mean they are 11 percent more efficient than land-based equivalents. The report identified unsolved issues with the plants, too, however. It said the study had to discard data collected when the panels moved in the wind, and said research into new mooring systems was ‘continually needed’.”