ABB supports Japan’s growing biomass power market with ninth automation order

3D model of Wakayama Gobo Biomass Power Plant ©Toyo Engineering
3D model of Wakayama Gobo Biomass Power Plant ©Toyo Engineering
  • ABB’s solution to automate the Enewill, Osaka Gas and SMFL MIRAI Partners greenfield Wakayama Gobo biomass power plant
  • Once operational, the facility will supply 50 MW of renewable energy, enough to power up to 110,000 households a year
  • Project marks ABB’s ninth automation contract with TOYO Engineering Corporation to support the development of biomass power generation facilities across Japan

ABB has secured its ninth contract with TOYO Engineering Corporation in Japan to supply its distributed control system (DCS) ABB Ability™ Symphony® Plus, to the Wakayama Gobo Biomass Power Plant, around 120 km south of Osaka.

When operational in 2025 the 50 MW biomass power plant, which will use wood pellets and agricultural byproduct as a feedstock, will be capable of supplying enough power for up to 110,000 Japanese households a year. The plant is being developed in partnership by Enewill (formerly JAG Energy), Osaka Gas and SMFL MIRAI Partners who have employed engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor TOYO to design and build the facility.

ABB’s DCS solution will deliver complete visibility of operations, enabling operators to make informed decisions in real time to help optimize production, improve processes, and drive efficiencies. ABB will also deploy its Adaptive Execution™ project management methodology which utilizes digitalization to speed up delivery schedules and achieve faster site start up.

The new order, booked in January this year, follows ongoing collaboration between ABB and TOYO, with the company integrating its automation solutions at eight other biomass facilities being constructed across Japan.

With domestic supply of energy increasing over four percent year-on-year, Japan, previously seen as a carbon intensive country, is investing in ways to match growth in demand with reducing its reliance on fossil fuels. In 2022 its renewable energy output increased by 11.7 percent, driven primarily by solar power and biomass generation.

“In its sixth Basic Energy Plan4, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry announced a target of 8 GW for installed biomass capacity in the country by 2030 which would cover five percent of its projected power demand,” said Brandon Spencer, President of ABB Energy Industries. “The nine projects that we are involved in will deliver a collective generation capacity of 500 MW, achieving over six percent of the Government’s target and providing energy to power more than one million households.”

Japan is currently the world’s fifth largest biomass market and is expected to grow by 5.4 percent a year until 2025 and 3.7 percent a year through the following decade. ABB is an established leader in the power generation market in Japan, with expertise when delivering process control systems. This, coupled with new initiatives that have been proven on other TOYO projects, made ABB the partner of choice.

ABB’s Process Automation business automates, electrifies, and digitalizes industrial operations that address a wide range of essential needs – from supplying energy, water and materials, to producing goods and transporting them to market. With its ~20,000 employees, leading technology and service expertise, ABB Process Automation helps customers in process, hybrid and maritime industries improve performance and safety of operations, enabling a more sustainable and resource-efficient future.

ABB is a technology leader in electrification and automation, enabling a more sustainable and resource-efficient future. The company’s solutions connect engineering knowledge and software to optimize how things are manufactured, moved, powered, and operated. Building on more than 130 years of excellence, ABB’s ~105,000 employees are committed to driving innovations that accelerate industrial transformation.


  2. Japan 2021 – Analysis - IEA
  3. FY2021 Energy Supply and Demand Report (Revised Report) (
  4. 6th_outline.pdf (
  5. Japan: biomass energy market size 2035 | Statista
  6. Biomass in Japan: the case for small local plants | S-GE


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