Comparing Photovoltaic (PV) Costs and Deployment Drivers in the Japanese and U.S. Residential and Commercial Markets

This joint lab report investigates Japan’s solar PV market trends and compares its findings with trends in the U.S. solar PV market. Data were collected from more than 80 Japanese PV installers to estimate PV system costs, namely hardware costs, soft costs, and installed system prices for residential and small commercial. The report finds that Japan’s residential PV systems cost 6 percent compared to U.S. systems, and small commercial PV systems cost 20 percent less. Additionally, Japan’s higher hardware costs cause its soft costs to account for a considerably smaller proportion of system prices compared to the U.S.