"Ranzan Onuma Floating Solar Power Plant" (source: Taiyo Holdings)
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Taiyo Green Energy Co Ltd (Ranzan-machi, Saitama Prefecture) built a floating solar power plant on a reservoir (Onuma) adjacent to the Saitama Plant of Taiyo Ink Mfg Co Ltd (Ranzan-machi, Saitama Prefecture) and had the opening ceremony of the power plant Dec 7, 2017.

Taiyo Green Energy and Taiyo Ink Mfg are both affiliated with the Taiyo Holdings group. The plant, "Ranzan Onuma Floating Solar Power Plant," is Taiyo Green Energy's second power generation facility after a floating solar power plant that started operation on a balancing reservoir in Ranzan Hanamidai Industrial Park in Ranzan-machi (town) in October 2015.

The output of the new floating solar power plant is about 318kW. The plant is expected to generate about 333,000kWh of electricity, which is equivalent to about 5% of the power consumed in the Saitama Plant, per year. All the electricity generated at the plant is used for operation of the Saitama Plant.

The solar panel and PV inverter employed for the floating solar power plant are products of JA Solar Japan Ltd and Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corp (TMEIC), respectively. Mitsubishi Chemical Engineering Corp provided EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) services while Taiyo Green Energy is responsible for O&M (operation and maintenance) services.

The initial investment is about ¥86 million (approx US$757,709). The project was selected as the "Project for Promoting Use of Renewable Energy With Independence In Terms of Electricity/Heat in Fiscal 2017," which is led by Japan's Ministry of the Environment. And it is scheduled to receive a subsidy for reducing CO2 emissions, etc. The subsidy accounts for 1/3 of the total project cost.

In general, solar panels generate less electricity when the temperature rises. The installation of solar panels on the water is advantageous because it can reduce temperature rise and improve power generation efficiency. Also, Taiyo Green Energy expects that the solar panels will block sunlight and prevent the generation of blue-green algae.