Smart Solar begins building 34 MW in northern Japan


The Tokyo-based PV developer is building the solar array on a hilly plot of land near the city of Kushiro. It expects to connect the project to the grid in January 2020.

The company did not reveal additional details about the PV modules and the lithium-ion storage battery. Tokyo-based infrastructure specialist Kandenko has been selected to handle EPC duties.

All electricity will be sold to regional utility Hokkaido Electric Power at a feed-in tariff rate of JPY 40 ($0.36)/kWh over a period of 20 years. Upon completion, the project is expected to generate electricity of 38.37 million kWh per year, or enough for roughly 11,600 homes, according to an online statement.

Smart Solar has already built 25 MW of solar capacity at 15 sites throughout Japan, with an additional 83.5 MW under construction at nine locations. It also runs a solar O&M business.

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It plans to complete 22 MW near the city of Monbetsu, Hokkaido, by November. It also has 17 MW in early-stage development on the island near the town of Hidaka. In addition, it aims to connect 44 MW of solar capacity to the grid at four locations in Kumamoto prefecture, on the southern island of Kyushu, by March 2018.

Smart Solar’s 34 MW array near Kushiro is the second project announced on the island of Hokkaido in recent months to feature storage capacity. In late June, Tier-1 Chinese PV module supplier JinkoSolar revealed plans to provide solar panels for a 38.4 MW project in the port city of Tomakomai. Developer Fuji Electric has not revealed additional details about the 10 MWh storage system it plans to install at the site.

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