Utility-scale projects driving Japan’s PV module demand

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email

Shipments of PV modules for use in large-scale projects in Japan rose by 45% in the first quarter of the 2014 Japanese financial year, according to figures released this morning.

A statement and series of tables published by the Japan Photovoltaic Energy Association (JPVEA), a loosely-formed trade body, show figures for the period from April to July this year. Japan’s financial year begins at the end of March. JPVEA took a sample of 47 manufacturers, both domestic and foreign and asked them for statistics on their shipments to date.

JPVEA received replies from 39 of those companies, which include Japanese names such as Kyocera and Panasonic Sanyo alongside foreign competitors and their subsidiaries such as Hanwha Q Cells, Renesola Japan and Trina Solar Japan.

Within the Japanese domestic market, shipments of modules to the residential market stood at 86% of the equivalent period last year – in other words a 14% decrease in volume. Meanwhile non-residential projects used 162% of the volume of modules delivered in the same period last year. Residential module shipments totalled 493,478kW, while non-residential projects used 1,388,305kW of modules. This figure for non-residential shipments includes 657,144kW of modules from power generators of over 500kW for the purpose of selling electricity, i.e. utility-scale, which saw the aforementioned 45% rise.

Module exports from Japan accounted for just 2% of the whole market, signalling strong domestic demand as well as highlighting the relative expense of Japanese modules compared to their Chinese counterparts. 

In a recent interview with PV Tech, Dr Hiroshi Matsukawa of analysis firm RTS PV said that he expected utility-scale projects to drive strong near-term demand for solar modules, as developers rushed to complete projects that have been approved and not built. It is also expected that the feed-in tariff (FiT) offered in Japan will fall again in April of next year. Matsukawa said that he expected the backlog of unbuilt projects to continue to drive the construction of large scale projects over the next two years at least. Matsukawa said however that the future, especially the period that will follow 2017 when Japan’s FiT scheme is expected to finish, should be the Japanese PV industry’s “most pressing concern”.

19 August 2021
The utility-scale PV market is poised for exponential growth and yet the industry still has many fundamental opportunities to improve on standards and best practice. Tracker shade loss has been one of those topics that deserve more attention, but has been typically handled by derate factors rather than trying to accurately forecast the loss over the life of the system. Join Nextracker’s subject matter experts, Aron Dobos and Neelesh Umachandran, and Rounak Kharait, director of solar energy assessments at DNV, for a webinar about why shade modeling matters and recommendations on what the solar industry should do about it.
25 August 2021
Energy Next is a new industry exhibition focusing on the latest renewable energy and energy efficiency technology, which will be held for the first time in 2021 in Sydney, Australia alongside the Clean Energy Council’s Australian Clean Energy Summit, the peak gathering of leaders driving Australia's energy transformation. Organised by the same people behind Australia’s largest clean energy event, All-Energy Australia, Energy Next will give visitors two days of access to key suppliers in the industry, free-to-attend professional development and industry workshops, and networking opportunities to better understand clean energy issues and solutions and learn about the latest developments in this transformational, dynamic sector.
25 August 2021
The Intersolar Summit Brasil Nordeste takes place in Fortaleza, Brazil. It addresses leading local and international experts on solar power and renewable energy in the region. The Summit’s mission is to provide in-depth education, enable high-quality networking opportunities, expand the use of PV technologies at regional and national level and strengthen the local PV industry. The Intersolar Summit Brasil Nordeste is organized by Intersolar South America - Latin America’s largest exhibition and conference for the solar industry: Solar Promotion International GmbH, Pforzheim, Freiburg Management and Marketing International GmbH (FMMI) and Aranda Eventos & Congressos Ltda, São Paulo as co-organizer.
25 August 2021
Join us to hear directly from the CTOs and heads-of-research from the top-20 cell/wafer producers to the PV industry today. The event will focus on predicting the key metrics underpinning the next big shift to n-type with answers to the key questions: When will the transition to n-type happen? Which companies will be first to 10 GW capacity and production? Who will be the key equipment suppliers for the new production lines? Which n-type process flow/architecture will emerge as the front-runner? What will polysilicon purity and wafer thickness levels look like for optimized n-type manufacturing? What will the upstream poly/wafer supply-chain look like in 5 years from now?
26 August 2021
In this webinar, JA Solar will present its product portfolio based on the latest technologies to improve your PV projects, ensuring maximum reliability and performance. During the webinar we will receive insight from JA Solar about its solar technology roadmap and how the manufacturer is providing customers with innovative solutions to suit their needs, while we will also analyse how to determine the best product solution for each solar project.
6 September 2021
The 38th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition will be held online from 6 - 10 September 2021, allowing PV experts from all around the globe to participate with just one click! The EU PVSEC is the world's leading forum for PV Research and Development and the biggest Conference on PV Solar Energy worldwide. That is why PV experts from all around the globe are keen on gathering together each year to be part of this specialist’s event, to present and discuss the latest developments in Photovoltaics, to network and to conduct business.

Read Next

PV Tech Premium
July 30, 2021
Not only will solar be the dominant source of new power generation in Europe by 2025, cementing its position as the third largest market for solar globally, but the continent has placed the asset class at the very heart of its COVID-19 recovery strategy. As part of a week-long special report on PV Tech Premium, Liam Stoker, Edith Hancock and Jules Scully explore the drivers for solar in Europe, the key markets and the challenges that remain.
July 30, 2021
First Solar has unveiled plans to construct a 3.3GWdc module assembly facility in India, bolstering its manufacturing footprint outside of the US.
July 30, 2021
Anglo-Australian mining company BHP, in partnership with Canada’s TransAlta Renewables, is to build two solar farms and a battery storage system to help power its Mt Keith and Leinster nickel mines in Western Australia
July 30, 2021
German energy giant RWE has upgraded its earnings forecast for 2021 after “exceptionally positive” earnings trend
July 29, 2021
Tracker and racking provider Arctech has delivered SkySmart II tracking system to a 575MW agriculture-sharing solar project located in Nangong City, Hebei Province, China.
July 29, 2021
Unigreen Energy, owned by Hevel majority shareholder Ream Management LLC, has broken ground on a wafer and cell manufacturing plant that will produce 1.3GW of silicon n-type monocrystalline ingots and wafers as well as 1GW of heterojunction technology (HJT) solar cells.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
August 19, 2021
At 9am (PT) | 6pm (CEST)
Solar Media Events
August 25, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 19, 2021