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Toshiba Makes Full-scale Entry into Residential Solar Photovoltaic Systems Business

Starting sales of systems with solar panels offering high level conversion efficiency[1]
1 Mar, 2010

TOKYO—Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO: 6502) today announced that it will make its full-scale entry into the residential solar photovoltaic systems business in Japan on April 1st 2010, with the goal of winning a 10% share of the Japanese market by fiscal year 2012.

Toshiba's residential solar photovoltaic systems comprise photovoltaic modules, power conditioners and color LCD that displays the overall system status. The photovoltaic modules will be supplied by SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ: SPWRA, SPWRB) and will integrate solar cells that achieve a conversion efficiency of cells of 21.5%, one of the highest[2]commercially available conversion efficiencies. Toshiba's photovoltaic systems will combine these modules with a power conditioner and achieve a total power generating efficiency rate of 15.9%. This level of performance will allow configuration of smaller, lighter systems suited to Japanese residences.

In entering the residential solar photovoltaic systems business, Toshiba will draw on its experience in the solar photovoltaic systems market for utilities and industrial plants, and its high level capabilities in system integration and deployment. The business will initially have about 30 employees, a number expected to grow to approximately 80 by fiscal year 2012. Toshiba will promote the business by establishing a training center to support the contractors who will install the systems, and expects to conduct training programs for approximately 3,000 employees of contractors by the end of fiscal year 2010.

Going forward, Toshiba aims to drive business expansion with an enhanced product line-up that can meet a wide range of needs for the residential solar photovoltaic systems.

Background and Objectives

A growing awareness of the need to counteract global warming is prompting various measures to promote residential solar systems in Japan. Prefectural and city governments are introducing purchase subsidy programs, and power companies have established a feed-in tariff system that pays a premium rate for surplus electricity to owners of solar power systems connected to the grid.

In fiscal year 2015 the residential solar photovoltaic systems market scale in Japan is expected to reach approximately 600 billion yen, up from 140 billion yen in fiscal year 2008, and further growth over the long term is widely expected. In this market situation, Toshiba will strengthen its line-up of energy-saving products for households by entering into the market for residential solar photovoltaic systems, alongside its current businesses in promoting home-electrification, LED lighting, and low power consumption digital products.

Toshiba is also promoting a next generation power network system for its emerging Smart Grid business. Since residential solar photovoltaic systems are an important dispersed power generation source in Smart Grids, full scale entry into this business will allow Toshiba to strengthen its overall business capabilities in Smart Grids.

Toshiba is also involved in the rechargeable battery business with its innovative SCiB and in the smart meter business. With the combination of these products, Toshiba aims to promote sales of total solar photovoltaic systems that build on its current businesses.

Conversion efficiency rate: multiplied by maximum module conversion efficiency rate (16.9%), and power conversion efficiency rate (94.0%).
For commercially available photovoltaic modules as of March 1, 2010 (source: Toshiba)

Image of the New Systems


Image of New System



Outline of New Systems

Product Model Name Suggested Retail Price in Japan(including tax) Launch in Japan
Photovoltaic Module SPR-210N-WHT-J 147,000 yen April 1st, 2010
Power Conditioner TPV-PCS0400A
304,500 yen
(Output 5.5KW)
420,000 yen
Color Display TPV-CM001A-CM
(Color display unit)
99,750 yen
(Measurement unit)


Key Features of the New Systems

1. Photovoltaic module cells with one of the world's highest[2] commercially available conversion efficiencies

Mono-crystalline photovoltaic modules with cells offering a conversion efficiency of 21.5%, one of the highest commercially available conversion efficiencies, generate more power with a smaller footprint. Superiority in optical and electric characteristics makes it possible to generate electric power in the side range of the wavelength, realizing effective power generation in morning and evening, when light levels are lower, and on cloudy days when light is weak.

2. Configuration of smaller, lighter systems

Using highly efficient Mono-crystalline photovoltaic modules generates more power with a smaller system footprint. System installation takes up less room and puts less weight on house roofs.

3. Elegant module design

The photovoltaic modules feature back contact solar cells (putting both contacts on the rear of the cell), realizing an elegant external design with no contacts or solder visible on the surface.

Specifications of the New Systems

1. Photovoltaic Module

Model SPR-210N-WHT-J
Type of Cell Mono-Crystalline
Cell Efficiency 21.5 %
Module Efficiency 16.9 %
Peak Power 210 W
Rated Voltage 40.0 V
Rated Current 5.25 A
Open Circuit Voltage 47.7 V
Short Circuit Current 5.75 A
Maximum System Voltage 600 V
Length (W×H×D) 1559 x 798 x 46 mm
Weight 15.0 kg


Image of Photovoltaic Module
Photovoltaic Module(SPR-210N-WHT-J)

2. Power Conditioner

Model TPV-PCS0400A
(Output 5.5KW)
Operating Environment Condition Indoors (-10 to 40ºC); Humidity: (25 to 85 %)
Rated Input Voltage DC 250V DC 240V
Operation Voltage Range DC 100V to DC 370V
Maximum Input Voltage DC 370V
Rated Output Voltage AC 202 V(Single phase 3 line type)
Rated Output Power 4.0kW (When connected to the grid) 5.5 kW (When connected to the grid)
1.5kW (In self-sustained operation)
Power conversion efficiency rate 94.0%
Insulation system Transformer-less system
External Dimensions (W×H×D mm) 460 x 280 x 116mm 550 x 280 x 160mm
Weight 13.0kg 24.0kg


Image of TPV-PCS0400A Image of TPV-PCS0550A
Power Conditioner
Power Conditioner

3. Color Display Unit

Model TPV-CM001A-CM
Color Display Unit
Measurement Unit
Screen Size Color TFT 5.6 inch -
Display content Power generation and consumption, purchase electricity, sell electricity
Environmental impact
(CO2, Petroleum consumption)

Energy saving guide function, etc

Data transfer method Wireless/Wired (Switchable)
Set-up Stand-alone type/Wall set up Wall mounting
Rated Input Voltage DC 12 V
(Accessory: AC Adapter)
Single phase 3 line
Maximum Power Consumption - Below 3W
Environmental Conditions Temperature: -10 degrees to 40 degrees (without freezing),
Humidity: 25% to 85% (without condensation)
External Dimensions (W ×H×D mm) 170 x 140 x 37mm 155 x 220 x 53mm
Weight Approx. 500g Approx.550g


Image of TPV-CM001A-CM Image of TPV-CM001A-SU
Color Display Unit
Measurement Unit

Information in the news releases, including product prices and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current on the date of the press announcement, but is subject to change without prior notice.

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