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Solar Frontier’s CIS Solar Panels Installed on K-Line’s New Environmentally Friendly Transport Ship2016-02-09

 Solar Frontier’s CIS Solar Panels Installed on K-Line’s New Environmentally Friendly Transport Ship


   One of the world’s largest solar energy systems on a ship


Tokyo, February 9th, 2016 – Solar Frontier announced today its CIS solar panels were installed by Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (“K Line”), one of Japan’s largest shipping companies, on its newest environmentally friendly transport ship.


K Line’s new ship, a car-carrier named “Drive Green Highway”, integrates advanced energy-efficient technologies and design improvements to reduce its impact on the environment. It is the first of 8 similar vessels that will be built under K Line’s “Drive Green Project”, and was launched today at a ceremony in Nagasu Port in Kumamoto, a coastal city in southern Japan.


Drive Green Highway uses its sheer size to improve its emissions efficiency. The vessel is 200 meters long, 37.5 meters wide and uses an improved design that enables it to carry up to 7,500 passenger vehicles at once.


Drive Green Highway integrates among the world’s most advanced environmentally friendly and energy-saving technologies. These range from its greenhouse gas suppression systems in its engines to Solar Frontier’s CIS solar panels on its decks.


Combing the advantages of its design and technology improvements, Drive Green Highway will emit 25% less carbon-dioxide (CO2), 50% less nitrogen-oxide (NOx) and 90% less sulfur-oxide (SOx) per vehicle transported.


Contributing to Drive Green Highway’s energy efficiency is one of the largest solar energy systems on any ship in the world. More than 900 of Solar Frontier’s CIS solar panels have been installed on Green Drive Highway’s top deck, totaling 150 kilowatt-peak of electricity generating capacity. The electricity generated by these solar panels will be used to power all LED lighting on the vehicle decks.


K Line selected Solar Frontier’s CIS modules to install on their new ship because they generate higher electricity yield (kilowatt-hours per kilowatt-peak) than crystalline silicon solar panels in real-world conditions. Their strength in hot environments and salt-mist environments, such as at sea, will support Drive Green Highway as it ships cargo around the world.


“K Line is demonstrating how solar energy can improve the energy efficiency and reduce the ecological impact of the shipping industry,” said Atsuhiko Hirano, CEO of Solar Frontier. “This is one example of the greater role that solar energy has to play in our future, supporting an ever broader range of technologies in a wider range of industries.”


Solar Frontier will continue to support industries with innovative, reliable solar energy solutions as part of its vision: harnessing the power of the sun to provide a cleaner, more comfortable lifestyle for everyone.





Length199.99m x Width 37.50m x Depth 38.23m x Draft 9.925m


20,034 tons


76,387 tons


20.00 knots

Carrying Capacity:

7,500 passenger vehicles

Image: Drive Green Highway, the first of a series of similar vessels to be built under K Line’s Drive Green Project (Image courtesy of Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd.). Click  the image to enlarge.


About Solar Frontier

Solar Frontier K.K., a 100% subsidiary of Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. (TYO:5002) (“Solar Frontier”), has a mission to create the most economical, ecological solar energy solutions on Earth. Building on a legacy of work in solar energy since the 1970s, Solar Frontier today develops and manufactures CIS (denoting copper, indium, selenium) thin-film solar modules for customers in all sectors around the world. Solar Frontier’s gigawatt-scale production facilities in Miyazaki, Japan, integrate compelling economical and ecological advantages into every module: from lower energy requirements in manufacturing to the higher overall output (kWh) of CIS in real operating conditions. Solar Frontier is headquartered in Tokyo, with offices in Europe, the U.S.A., and the Middle East. Visit  for more information.


About Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K.

Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and has roots dating back more than 100 years in the downstream energy business.


For Solar Frontier global media inquiries, please contact:

Kai Maraun or Akane Yamiya

Corporate Communications Department, Solar Frontier

Tel: +81 (3) 5531-5792



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