GE Installed the First 1,500-Volt Solar Inverter in Japan

13.04.2017
GE was chosen to provide two, LV5 1-MW, 1,500-volt inverters to Looop Co., Ltd. (Photo: GE)
GE was chosen to provide two, LV5 1-MW, 1,500-volt inverters to Looop Co., Ltd. (Photo: GE)

Following an agreement reached last year, GE has successfully delivered and installed one of two 1,500-Volt solar inverters in the Ibaragi prefecture. The unit is now in smooth operation in Looop Co. Ltd.’s PV-plant, as the manufacturer announced. The successful commercial operation of the unit marks the entry of 1,500-volt solar technology in Japan’s solar market.

Renewable energy is reshaping the energy landscape in Japan. At the time of a shrinking feed-in-tariff, Japanese energy companies are concentrated on improving their technology to enable more cost-effective solar energy. The Looop Co., Ltd. relied on GE-technology to achieve this.

“Looop strives to make renewable energy become the central pillar of the electricity generation in Japan. We embrace advanced technology that leads to more cost-effective and thus, more viable, solar energy production. The partnership with GE has strengthened our confidence to achieve the goal,” said Soichiro Nakamura, president of Looop Co., Ltd.

GE was chosen to provide two, LV5 1-megawatt (MW), 1,500-volt inverters to Looop. As GE points out, the units can provide broad-ranging benefits compared to the last generation of 1,000-volt inverters. The more-efficient inverter technology reduces costs associated with infrastructure, deployment and operation expenditures, which can lead to up to a 3 percent lower system cost and up to 15 percent less in maintenance costs.

Philipp Kronsbein / GE

Similar Entries

At this year’s Intersolar Europe, KACO new energy presents its new 1500-volt inverters for the first time: the 125 kW string inverter blueplanet 125 TL3 and the 3300 kW central inverter blueplanet 3300 TL3 outdoor. For PV plants from 15 kW upwards, the German manufacturer has added the blueplanet 15.0 TL3 to its portfolio. For the storage market, there is a new battery inverter with a power output of 250 kilowatts. The product offering is rounded off by system solutions and services which also apply the cost advantages of state-of-the-art technologies in the devices to lower overall project costs. On view at stand 230 in hall B3.

Sungrow announces that it supplied central inverters totaling 18 MW in Japan, last December. The company containerized SG2000 central inverter has been supplied to the two plants in the area served by Kansai Electric Power and Chubu Electric Power respectively, and have been approved to be connected to local grids. Thanks to its compact design, the SG2000 is easy to deploy and install and only occupies 8 square meters.

SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA) has increased its installed inverter capacity in North America by 33% in less than a year to reach a staggering 10 GW. Combined, they produce enough energy to provide roughly 2 million average American homes with clean, renewable energy. SMA’s success is very much based on its innovative product portfolio which spans large turnkey solutions for utility power plants and three-phase inverter technology with energy management function to fully optimized string-inverters for residential applications. All products have a German engineering standard and are fully supported by the local SMA sales and service team.

The PV inverter manufacturer Sungrow has recently signed an agreement with Blue Capital Management Co., Ltd, a Japanese developer, for the supply of 200 MW of central inverters in Japan. Tokyo-based developer Blue Power noted that they felt confident in the agreement “as Sungrow has an excellent manufacturing operation and provides reliable inverters with proven quality.” The plant will be completed in three years. Blue Power plans to build a total of 500MW in the future. The project will employ Sungrow’s SG2000 central inverter.