Published on February 13th, 2016 | by Guest Contributor6
NREL Releases New International Solar PV Manufacturing Quality Standard
February 13th, 2016 by Guest Contributor
Originally published on Sustainnovate.
By Henry Lindon
A new international quality standard for manufacturing solar photovoltaic (PV) modules has been created following on 5 years of work by researchers at the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and elsewhere, according to a recent press release.
The new standard is intended to supplement the existing one (ISO-9001), and will be used to“increase the level of confidence investors, utilities, and consumers have in solar panel safety and reliability” — which is expected to, in turn, help reduce the cost of financing for solar energy projects.
The standard was developed jointly with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the International PV Quality Assurance Task Force (PVQAT), and is now accessible online for a fee (“Terrestrial Photovoltaic (PV) Modules — Guidelines for increased confidence in PV module design qualification and type approval“).
The new quality standard details how PV manufacturers need to:
* Consider potential failure modes and take steps to address those in the design, production, application, and delivery process.
* Obtain IEC certification and implement an ongoing reliability test program that monitors the performance of PV modules.
* Improve product traceability through the entire supply chain in the case of recalls or warranty claims.
In addition, pass-fail requirements, a checklist, and guidance on how exactly factory audits are to be completed have been created — and are currently in the process of being put into place (IEC 62941).
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