Solar Plant Design

For the plants that were designed in a project finance framework, the investment has gravitated towards lower risk engineering with high-energy yield and strict cost optimisation. As the market developed, the land that was marginal to begin with was reassessed for its solar potential and developed at later stages. 

Our difference

  • Applying GIS technology to the solar PV plant development process in Japan. We use a system that works from digital elevation models to calculate the following: Slope,  Aspect, Hillshade,  Ruggedness Index and Relief. 
  • Solid understanding of Japanese industrial design and engineering culture and frameworks from a combined 12+ years of working in the solar industry inside Japan.
  • A helpful bridge to international design and engineering firms.
  • Sunpulse works closely in an integrated design approach with permitting, civil engineering firms and Sunpulse as the SOLAR design specialists.
  • We can produce a 3D Digital Elevation Model (DEM) based on data from the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan (GSI maps) at a 5m resolution.  (Please contact us if you need a 1m interpolation also.)
  • We use our drones to fly over the site and take pictures. These are then post-processed in software to build the best quality 2D maps and 3D models (with sub-cm accuracy). 
  • We can also use the data to calculate point clouds and volumetric calculations of the land based on the above datasets of varying accuracy depending on your needs.

Some examples of our DC interconnection design algorithm and shading design cases.

For Japan & 3D Terrains

In Japan, much of the useful land is not flat. The land that wouldn't be considered in other markets is considered and this adds to engineering, permitting and financing complexities. This means that a 3D surface model of the land is needed. This is different to many solar plants overseas whereby large-scale solar designers have never had to focus on complicated 3D terrains. 


We can issue x,y,z files, point clouds, shape files, .obj models, and also DXF, and DWG models. We can also post process the raw data to produce suitable solar power plant basemap files. 


We do a number of analysis on our basemap dataset including but not limited to hydrologic modelling including watershed analysis and terrain analysis including contour line computations.


Later, these basemap files become very important for the array, drainage, civil works, trench and other sub-design frameworks for the particular solar plant.  We issue layouts based on this framework.