DOCOMO to field test solar-powered green base stations

March 22, 2013

NTT DOCOMO, INC., Japan's leading mobile operator, announced that from April, it will begin field testing three conventional mobile-network base stations that have been installed with solar panels, high-capacity rechargeable batteries and green power controllers.

DOCOMO, which is developing disaster-proof, environmentally friendly base stations following the Great East Japan Earthquake, tested the equipment at its R&D Center from March 2012 to February 2013. The equipment will now be used to establish 10 green base stations in the Kanto-Koshinetsu region of Japan by late summer, including the first three in Tokyo, Kanagawa and Yamanashi prefectures.

DOCOMO's green base stations use solar panels to generate and store during the daytime. If commercial power supply is cut off during a disaster, the station can rely solely on this power to run communication equipment during the day and use high-capacity, rechargeable batteries to store 14-16 hours' worth of power when solar power is not available.

The to be used in the field test generate up to 4.19 kW, whereas the maximum power consumption of a base station is 2.0 kW. Remotely controlled green power controllers will manage power used by the base stations, including utility-provided electricity, solar panel-generated electricity, and high-capacity, that discharge their energy as required.

To cut down on electricity costs, the batteries can be charged with electricity purchased at nighttime, when costs are relatively low. Later, the electricity is used during the daytime, when costs are higher, or when inclement weather prevents photovoltaic power generation. Solar panel power generation can be used during disaster-induced blackouts to operate facilities during the day and store any excess power for nighttime use.

The controllers also enable solar power to be stored as direct current (DC), which avoids energy loss of about 10% due to conversion to alternating current (AC).

Going forward, DOCOMO's green base station develop program may also include the introduction of fuel cell technologies and wind-powered .

Explore further: Desert power: A solar renaissance

Related Stories

Desert power: A solar renaissance

April 1, 2008

What does the future hold for solar power? “Geotimes” magazine looks into more efficient ways of turning the sun’s power into electricity in its April cover story, “Desert Power: A Solar Renaissance.”

NTT DoCoMo plans green-energy cellphone masts

July 8, 2011

Japan's largest mobile phone operator, NTT DoCoMo, plans to start powering its cellphone tower network with renewable energy such as solar, wind or biomass, the company said Friday.

Nissan says electric car can power family home

August 2, 2011

Nissan's Leaf electric car can feed power from its battery back into a family home and run appliances for up to two days under a new project the Japanese car-maker unveiled Tuesday.

Successful active antenna connection test for LTE base stations

February 22, 2013

NTT DOCOMO, Japan's leading mobile operator and provider of integrated services centered on mobility, announced today that it has successfully connected an active antenna, a device expected to be widely used in LTE and LTE-Advanced ...

Recommended for you

Sydney makes its mark with electronic paper traffic signs

July 28, 2015

Visionect, which is in the business of helping companies build electronic paper display products, announced that Sydney has launched e-paper traffic signs. The traffic signage integrates displays from US manufacturer E Ink ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.