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Showa Shell Solar K.K. to build a solar power generation plant in Miyazaki Prefecture and conclusion on a partnership agreement with Miyazaki Prefecture

Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. (Chairman: Shigeya Kato, Headquarters: Daiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo)'s 100% subsidiary, Showa Shell Solar K.K. (President: Shigeaki Kameda, Headquarters: Daiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo) has decided to construct a solar power generation plant using CIS thin-film photovoltaic modules as a part of a subsidized project by Miyazaki Prefecture and a promotion of new energies by New Energy Promotion Council. Showa Shell Solar has made a partnership agreement with Miyazaki Prefecture on solar power generation business today.

The photovoltaic market is expected to grow significantly with subsidy programs for residential photovoltaic systems and the expanded buyback scheme applied to the surplus electricity in Japan, as well as with the U.S.'s Green New Deal Policy. In such business environment, Showa Shell pursues to strengthen the oil business and the solar business under its Medium Term Business Vision "EPOCH 2010". In September, Showa Shell Sekiyu and Showa Shell Solar have decided to build a third plant for manufacturing photovoltaic modules (annual production capacity of 900 megawatts) in Miyazaki Prefecture, which is planned to start operation in the latter half of 2011. We are aiming to further strengthen our solar business by engaging in manufacturing of photovoltaic modules as well as solar power generation.

Showa Shell Sekiyu believes this solar power generation business will be a good demonstration opportunity for promoting solar power generation in the future, and will pursue system cost reduction and optimal installation methods. The partnership agreement with Miyazaki Prefecture includes educational programs for local students, and the company will continue to work in partnership with the Prefecture on solar business.

[ Outline of the project ]
Address789-20 Ooaza-kanohei, Kiyotake-cho, Miyazaki-gun, Miyazaki
Prefecture (next to Miyazaki Second Plant)
Annual Production Capacity1,000kW
Start of power generation2010 (plan)

About CIS photovoltaic modules

CIS PV modules are leading edge solar panels, composed of Copper, Indium and Selenium, without the use of silicon. CIS modules are generally regarded as the most promising technology among all the thin-film photovoltaic applications. CIS modules have already achieved the highest efficiency level among the thin-film photovoltaic applications, and the potential is high for further improving the conversion efficiency with this technology. Compared to crystalline silicon photovoltaic modules that are the current mainstream, CIS modules can be produced at lower cost with fewer raw materials required and approximately half the manufacturing process steps. In addition, CIS modules are environmentally friendly products with a drastically reduced energy payback time (period required for the recovery of energy consumed during manufacturing through power generation), and Showa Shell's CIS modules do not contain toxic materials such as lead and cadmium.

Because of its innovative technology, Showa Shell CIS PV modules were awarded the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Prize, the highest award presented at the 12th New Energy Awards sponsored by the New Energy Foundation. Showa Shell's CIS modules also received the Prize for Excellence (Manufacturing and Technology Development Category) at the 2nd Monozukuri Nippon Grand Awards held by Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. With its superior design and solid black color that are well suited for rooftops, Showa Shell CIS modules were honored with the Ecology Design Prize of the Good Design Awards in 2007.

2009 Press Release Index
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