Japanese tire company, Sumitomo Rubber, has begun construction of the world’s largest single facility solar panel array in Thailand. The massive solar installation will be built on the roof of the Falken Tire plant and consist of 40,000 panels, with a total output of 22 MW.
Sumitomo Rubber is Japan’s first tire manufacturer and is now the fifth-largest in the world. The Falken Tire plant, located in the Rayong province, mainly supplies the European market. Once the installation is complete, the factory expects to be 100% sustainable.
The world’s largest rooftop solar installation will span an area of 100,000m2, bigger than 10 football fields. With 40,000 panels generating a combined output of 22 MW, it’ll be enough to power 2,724 households! The installation is expected to go online January 2025.
To increase power generation and stability, the factory will also install a cogeneration system. The system will be consist of two 6.6 MW renewable energy-powered boilers, replacing energy provided by local utility companies. Furthermore, biomass from surplus branches and trunks after rubber tree harvesting will provide additional power.
Sumitomo Rubber aims by 2029, to cut its emissions levels to half compared to 2017, and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, reducing annual CO2 emissions by 38,000 tons.
(Image Source: Sumitomo Rubber)