Five more companies have joined Kyocera, Kyudenko and Mizuho Bank to jointly investigate the possibility of operating a maximum 480MW solarpower project on the island of Ukujima at Sasebo city in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan.
Kyocera, Kyudenko and Mizuho Bank have been exploring this possibility since June 2014.
The new five participants include SPCG Public Company Limited, Tokyo Century Corporation, Furukawa Electric Company Limited, Tsuboi Corporation, and The Eighteenth Bank Limited.
Photovolt Development Partners started planning the solarpower project in April 2013 to contribute to economic revitalisation on the remote island.
Feed-in tariff (FIT) rights have been agreed to be transferred from PVDP to the newly established special purpose company named Ukujima Future Energy Holdings GK, and this firm will restart as a new project.
An investment of around JPY200bn ($1.80bn) is planned for the project, with the aim to begin construction in the fiscal year 2019.
The project is expected to use around 1.65 million Kyocera high-output multi-crystalline silicon solar modules for a 480MW system that would produce an estimated 515,000MW per annum.
With the development of a 64km undersea cable between Ukujima and the island of Kyushu, power generated from the project will be sold to local utility company Kyushu Electric Power based on the national FIT programme for renewable energy.
Under the plan, a land management company would take agricultural land on lease and sublease it to a special purpose company called Ukujima Future Energy GK, a unit of the Ukujima Future Energy Holdings GK to build and operate the solarpower systems.
This project will see some of the solar systems built on stilts, enabling land to be used for both power generation and agriculture.
The firms will work with Nagasaki prefectural government, the city of Sasebo and authorities in the community to look for an appropriate business model and how best to protect the environment.