If you've ever boated on a hot summer day, you probably know that open water collects a lot of sun and heat. Japanese engineers are going to take advantage of this feature and build the world's largest solar power plant on water.
Kyocera Corporation has already used the "power" of open water to create a solar panel farm near the Kagoshima Nanatsushima plant. A new, more powerful project will be built at the Yakamura reservoir and will use 50, 000 solar modules.
The modules will cover 180, 000 square meters of water. Engineers estimate the capacity of the future plant at 15.6 megawatt-hours per year. This is enough to provide electricity for about 4, 700 average households.
“When we first started using solar energy in the 1970s, technology was only used to power street lights or road signs. Now we are working to make the idea of using solar energy more popular in society, ”says CEO Nobuo Kitamura.
Engineers predict the floating power plant will harvest enough solar energy to offset 7, 800 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year. The station will also include a training center where students can study environmental issues.