NTT DATA to Conduct Demonstration Testing for Film-Type Perovskite Solar Cells on Exterior Building Walls
First such test in Japan to support carbon neutrality for all 16 domestic data centers by fiscal 2030
February 27, 2023
NTT DATA Corporation
TOKYO – February 27, 2023 – NTT DATA, a global digital business and IT services leader, will begin demonstration testing from April 2023 of film-type perovskite solar cells installed on the exterior walls of buildings. This joint project with Sekisui Chemical Co., Ltd. is the first such demonstration experiment conducted in Japan.
NTT DATA has been pursuing environmental measures for its data centers, including demonstrating reductions in server energy consumption by using liquid immersion cooling1, and enhancing environmental performance through the use of renewable energy, and is currently installing green energy generation systems at its business facilities. However, installing ordinary solar panels at data centers in central metropolitan areas, including those of NTT DATA, presents difficulties, and implementation has been slow. Using renewable energy in metropolitan areas generally requires power to be transmitted from solar panels in suburban areas under an offsite PPA2 or self-consignment system3, leading to issues of cost and loss due to the transmission load. NTT DATA aims to address this issue by utilizing film-type perovskite solar cells developed by Sekisui Chemical to generate and use renewable energy at its existing facilities in urban areas, realizing local production of renewable energy for local consumption.
The aim of this demonstration test is to identify potential issues with installing film-type perovskite solar cells on the exterior of a building. For the first phase of the project, solar cells will be installed on a small area on the exterior wall of Sekisui Chemical's R&D center to confirm the installation method and ensure structural safety, including wind pressure. Around April 2024, a system will then be installed on the exterior wall of the NTT Shinagawa TWINS Data Tower to verify the generating efficiency in urban areas and other aspects of practical application. Going forward, by demonstrating the installation method to ensure safety and generating efficiency, NTT DATA plans to introduce the system at all 16 of its data centers and offices in Japan, and aims to achieve carbon neutrality at its data centers by fiscal 2030.
NTT DATA has set targets of a 60% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions (compared to fiscal 2016 levels) by 2030, carbon neutrality for Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2040, and net zero for Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions by 2050. Since April 2022, energy used at the Toyosu Center Building and Toyosu Center Building Annex where NTT DATA's headquarters is located, and total energy consumed for operation of principal services (the settlement/finance related ANSER®, CAFIS®, and the digital transformation foundation OpenCanvas®), has been 100% renewable energy4. Further, NTT DATA expects to reach carbon neutrality at Okinawa IT Shinryo Park for the electricity used at No. 2 Tower and No. 7 Tower which provides the NTT DATA Group's BPO business5.
Decarbonization requires installation of onsite renewable energy systems in order to realize local production for local consumption and reduce the transmission load. However, it is difficult to secure space on the roofs or grounds of buildings in urban areas for conventional solar power systems. The weight of such systems is also considerable, and installation could result in exceeding the design load of buildings. NTT DATA therefore decided to adopt perovskite solar cells, next-generation solar cells that are lightweight with few restrictions on where they can be installed, and conduct tests to verify the installation method for exterior walls and the generating efficiency.
About Perovskite Solar Cells
Conventional solar panels are large and rigid, making them difficult to install at scale in metropolitan areas. The typical solution is to generate electricity in more open suburban areas, and transmit power to the facility that will use it under an offsite PPA or self-consignment system. However, this presents problems in terms of cost and loss due to the transmission load.
Film-type perovskite solar cells developed by Sekisui Chemical, by contrast, are lightweight and flexible, making them easier to install on existing buildings in metropolitan areas. These solar cells are expected to facilitate local production of renewable energy for local consumption in urban areas.
Overview of the Demonstration Test
Around April 2023 to March 2024
(Phase 1: Identification of issues at the Sekisui Chemical R&D center)
Around April 2024 to March 2029
(Phase 2: Demonstration testing at NTT Data data centers)
Sekisui Chemical R&D Center
2-1 Hyakuyama, Shimamoto-cho, Mishima-gun, Osaka
5 stories above ground
NTT Shinagawa TWINS Data Tower
1-9-1 Konan, Minato-ku, Tokyo
12 stories above ground, 2 stories below ground
Main Content of Demonstration Test
- Establish installation method and means for securing solar cell modules
- Measure the generating efficiency of solar cells on exterior walls (vertical surfaces), and compare predicted values with measured values
- Verify durability in areas prone to salt damage
- Verify feasibility of installation work on buildings in urban centers
- Use renewable energy generated within data centers
Role of Each Company
|NTT DATA||(Phase 1)
|Sekisui Chemical||(Phase 1)
Going forward, NTT DATA plans to implement this system at its owned buildings in Japan, utilizing the installation method determined based on this demonstration test. Using a combination of perovskite solar cells and other measures, NTT DATA aims to achieve carbon neutrality at its data centers by fiscal 2030. Further, through verification of an installation method to establish a means for introducing renewable energy for the exterior walls of existing buildings, NTT DATA will contribute to the decarbonization of buildings in metropolitan areas established as social capital.
NTT DATA Carbon-neutral Vision 2050
NTT DATA has formulated the NTT DATA Carbon-neutral Vision 2050 based on its environmental policies and targets, and is implementing measures to achieve this concept.
To realize a carbon-neutral society by 2050, NTT DATA promotes Green Innovation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across its supply chain, while contributing to the greening of clients and society. The company plans to achieve carbon neutrality in Scope 1 and 2 by 2040, and net zero in Scope 1, 2, and 3 by 2050.
- 1. "NTT DATA Achieves 97% Reduction in Energy Used to Cool ICT Equipment with New Method of Direct Cooling in Liquid" (June 6, 2022)
- 2. An offsite power purchase agreement (PPA) is a contract between a renewable energy project owner and a power buyer (user) to purchase renewable energy at a predetermined price for a fixed period of time. Renewable energy generated at facilities in locations away from the area of demand is supplied to the buyer over the ordinary electric power system.
- 3. Self-consignment is a system in which a user or power generation operator installs a solar power generation system at an offsite location separate from the facility where power is needed, with the power generated supplied over the electric power system to that facility for in-house consumption.
- 4. "NTT DATA Begins 100% Renewable Energy Installation in ANSER®, CAFIS®, and OpenCanvas®" (March 16, 2022) (Japanese)
- 5. "NTT DATA Concludes Agreement for Carbon Neutrality at Okinawa IT Shinryo Park" (April 27, 2022) (Japanese)
- "ANSER" "CAFIS" and "OpenCanvas" are a registered trademarks of NTT DATA Corporation in Japan.
- Other names of products, companies, and organizations are trademarks or registered trademarks of those companies.
About NTT DATA
NTT DATA – a part of NTT Group – is a trusted global innovator of IT and business services headquartered in Tokyo. We help clients transform through consulting, industry solutions, business process services, IT modernization and managed services. NTT DATA enables clients, as well as society, to move confidently into the digital future. We are committed to our clients' long-term success and combine global reach with local client attention to serve them in over 50 countries. Visit us at nttdata.com.
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