Hanwha Q Cells Japan claims it is now “the leading solar module supplier in Japan”, with 770 MW of module shipments in 2017.
Hanwha, which is headquarted in South Korea, says this growth builds upon a strong showing for Hanwha Q Cells Japan in 2016, when the company was the second largest module supplier with 700 MW of shipments.
Hanwha Q Cells Japan first entered the Japanese solar market in 2011. In 2012, the company delivered a relatively modest 50 MW of modules, before rising to become the leading overseas player in 2013 with shipments of 500 MW.
Non-domestic solar module suppliers have long struggled to gain secure footing in the Japanese photo-voltaic market.
A combination of strong domestic brands and a historical preference for high-quality products has meant that Japanese end consumers, distributors and installers have rarely chosen a non-Japanese solar module, says Hanwha.
That attitude is changing. The product portfolio offered to Japanese customers by Hanwha Q Cells Japan is defined by its slogan “Engineered in Germany” and proprietary Q.Antum technology.
All Hanwha Q Cells’ modules go through stringent quality tests, which are three times stricter than global testing standards, in order to meet the exacting standards and preferences required in Japan.
Awards and accolades bestowed upon Hanwha Q Cells’ modules – including the recent Intersolar Award 2018 in the category of Photovoltaics for the Q.Peak Duo-G5 half-cell module, and the “Top Brand PV Europe Seal 2018” award from EuPD research – serve to underline the excellence in reliability, performance, quality and innovation that Japanese customers appreciate.
Hanwha Q Cells Japan provides localized products and solutions, such as smaller 32- and 48-cell modules that are better suited to Japanese residential rooftops.
The Q.Home+ all-in-one storage solution, which is comprised of a battery, inverter, and energy management system, is also available in Japan.
Furthermore, Hanwha Q Cells Japan operates one of the largest sales networks in Japan, with a Tokyo HQ and four additional sales branches in Fukuoka, Osaka, Nagoya and Sendai.
Hanwha Q Cells Japan’s technical support center is located in Tsukuba. With such a broad presence, Hanwha Q Cells Japan can provide its customers with all the support they require.
Residential growth equals residential strength for Hanwha Q Cells Japan
The residential PV sector is enjoying a renaissance due to the Japanese government’s Zero Energy House (ZEH) directive.
The ZEH states that more than half of new homes built by 2020 should have zero emissions.
According to consulting firm RTS Corporation, residential installations will play a leading role in pushing 2018 PV installations in Japan to as high as 7.5 GW – up from 2017.
In the residential market last year, Hanwha Q Cells Japan’s Q.Peak was the most preferred module and won the ‘Smart HIT Award 2017’ by Smart House Magazine.
The Q.Peak series uses Hanwha Q Cells’ proprietary Q.Antum (PERC) monocrystalline cell technology to deliver efficiencies of up to 18.6 percent, offering outstanding yields over smaller surface areas.
Hanwha Q Cells, together with Hanwha Q Cells Korea, is the world’s largest manufacturer of PERC solar cells, with annual production capacity of over 6 GW.
Inventor of PERC and recent Global Energy Prize winner, Dr Martin Green predicts that PERC technology will be the direction in which the rest of the industry will go. “Hanwha Q Cells has definitely led the way in getting PERC into production,” says Dr Green.
Dong-in Shin, the head of sales for Hanwha Q Cells Japan, says: “Securing leading market share in a competitive, high-quality solar market such as Japan is testament to the extensive effort put in by the Hanwha Q Cells R&D team to ensure that our module products are continually the best-in-class.”
“As a non-domestic company, thriving in the Japanese solar market is incredibly challenging, which is why Hanwha Q Cells Japan has taken great care to understand the needs of end customers in Japan, examining closely which solutions, products and services would best fit their needs, and why we have duly delivered.
“Our aim now is to continue to strengthen this market-leading position in Japan and further build strong relationships throughout the country.”