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Published on November 8th, 2012 | by Jake Richardson


Floating Solar Plants To Expand In Japan

November 8th, 2012 by  

As previously reported on CleanTechnica, Japan is experimenting with floating renewable energy. It is now expanding on that with ten floating solar installations totaling 20 MW of power capacity. These will be built by home renovator West Holdings. It will get the technology from South Korea’s LS Industrial Systems.


Though this type of solar installation may sound exotic and even unnecessary to some, Japan has enough earthquakes that floating solar panels would be very sensible in some areas.

A nature reserve in Saitama and a swamp in Osaka are two of the first locations for these solar installations. Together, their capacity is 3 MW.

Notably, floating solar panels have been operating at a Napa Valley winery since 2011.

Japan is transitioning away from nuclear power and currently has most of its nuclear plants offline.

Image Credit: Araisyohei, Wiki Commons

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Hello, I have been writing online for some time, and enjoy the outdoors. If you like, you can follow me on Google Plus.

  • Obama’s energy policy is right. The world goes solar. Japan’s FiT in July is among the highest in the world. Japan’s FiT is shaking the solar market. Now, United States has the same options. New solutions will be showed in Japan. This is it! As you know, earthquake in Japan is happening frequently. Floating solar panels installation is one of the best solutions for power crisis in Japan.
    New Floating Body Stabilizer for Floating solar panels installation has been created in South Korea. The Floating Body Stabilizers generate drag force immediately when Floating solar panels are being rolled and pitched on the water. Recently, these Floating Body Stabilizers have been used to reduce vibration of Floating Solar Panels in South Korea.

    You can watch New Floating Body Stabilizer videos on YouTube.,

  • Ronald Brak

    In Japan nature reserve often simply means park, or greenspace and is generally land that is too lumpy to conveniently build or farm on.

  • Ian

    Strange move covering nature reserves with solar panels. Deserts maybe, but wetlands, thats a big no-no.

  • freedomev

    I find this disturbing because the water needs the sunlight to live. Just put them on roofs, paking lots, over roads, powerpoles, etc where the load is saving the transmission line costs too.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Do some math. Panel area/ocean area….

      • freedomev

        ———Please stop harrassing me Bob. These won’t survive in the ocean and they are in a nature preserve where light in the water equals life.

        ———-Roofs equal needed area is the math that cuts powerline needs too. And with the power shortages in Japan, home/building owners will still have power as a bonus during them.

        • Bob_Wallace

          I am not harassing you. But I do intend to post when I feel that you are making incorrect claims. And I will continue to ask you to document some of your claims. Leaving incorrect statements standing unchallenged can mislead others.

          “West Holdings is currently looking for space to install large solar plants on water, a model that offers abundant exposure to the sun’s rays and a stable surface, the daily said.

          The company will import the needed technology from South Korea’s LS Industrial Systems and ensure that the cables, gaskets and other panel parts are water-resistant, Nikkei reported.”

          • freedomev

            —-Please show one thing here I posted that was not correct?
            ——So you are advocating destroying underwater life in a perserve for units that are unlikely to survive 5 yrs in the salt water evironment that cost 2x’s those on land and unlikely to last long enough to get even payback?
            ——– Notice they say water resistant. How about bird droppings, salt spray?
            ——– Putting biocides on the float bottoms?
            ——- That cost several times more to maintain?
            ——–That in ocean will be torn apart by the first big storm, hurricane. Typhoon they regularly get there?
            .——-These details clearly show you are just harrassing me. And you say you are for the environment?
            ——–Using news reports by people who know little proves nothing.
            ——– I design, build, use boats, etc and live on the water doing marine electrics, RE ther too for 40 yrs. What is your knowledge base?

          • Bob_Wallace

            One thing incorrect you’ve posted – wind patterns have moved 200 miles north. (You only asked for one.)

            “So you are advocating destroying underwater life in a perserve for units that are unlikely to survive 5 yrs in the salt water evironment that cost 2x’s those on land and unlikely to last long enough to get even payback?”

            Your posts are full of assumptions that you present as fact.

            “Destroying underwater life” – a speculation.

            “Cost several times more to maintain” – a speculation

            This is a continuing problem. You claim that 4th gen nuclear plants will be cheap. You claim that small turbines in urban centers are a great way to produce electricity.

            There’s no reason to put biocides on float bottoms. These things are not boats moving through the water.

            Try couching your statements as opinions or thoughts rather than facts unless you can back up what you say.

          • freedomev

            Again you put up your opinion, Please present data to back your claims up.
            And again your are just harrassing me.

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