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Mega-solar Power Plant Plagued by Vines (page 4)

Picket-based panel installation changed to foundation-based method

2014/04/06 12:22
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute
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Unexpected strength of vines

As one year has passed since power generation started in April 2013, some challenges started to surface. For example, the vines outside the mega-solar plant site grew over the fence around the perimeter. Having been neglected, the vines grew as fat and strong as wood and climbed over the metal net fences, turning them into sheets or walls of vines (Fig. 6 & 7). A typhoon then struck, and the fences leaned after being directly hit by the strong wind with little room left for the wind to escape.

Learning from this experience, Nippon Comsys decided to entrust weeding from the plant's environs to the slopes twice a year to a local affiliated enterprise. Each time, it costs several million yen.

"They may not seriously affect the amount of power generation itself, but they could cause danger to the surrounding area if the fences are broken," Comsys Create said. "The force of the weeds was beyond our imagination."