Renewable Energy Test Center, LLC (RETC), a leading engineering services and certification testing provider, has published its annual PV Module Index (PVMI 2020) report. RETC’s PVMI report utilizes independent test lab data to recognize high performers and showcase high achievement in PV module manufacturing.
The annual PVMI report consolidates their independent test data to share best practices regarding testing and manufacturing as well as relevant performance distribution data in three essential categories: reliability indicators, quality indicators, and performance indicators. Manufacturers that achieve high performance according to these three disciplines not only demonstrate a commitment to excellence but also provide a benchmark—a quantitative measure representing the best that the industry has to offer.
“Manufacturers have become more likely to take extra care in vetting their secondary and tertiary suppliers and to perform more rigorous and more frequent reliability monitoring tests,” commented Cherif Kedir, Chief Executive Officer of RETC. “As developers require and sometimes take on additional due diligence on these products, the industry will benefit as projects are fulfilled with higher-quality and more reliable modules ensuring a higher yield and lower overall O&M costs over the life of these installations.”
RETC recorded all of the published data related to reliability, performance, and quality at its testing facilities during the 2019 calendar year. To contextualize these data, RETC’s PVMI report provides information about relevant test methods, performance metrics, and best practices for quality assurance and control. Additionally, the PVMI considers some emerging industry trends and mines historical PV module listing data.
Highlights from the PVMI report include::
- Nearly 37% of modules that RETC subjected to Damp Heat testing in 2019 experienced less than 2% power loss. Additionally, more than 60% of products tested experienced power loss between 2% and 5%, meaning these modules meet the 5% performance degradation allowance in the certification standard in spite of the doubled test duration
- A reflection of improved performance: top manufacturers demonstrated high product quality by achieving power degradation of less than 2% for a given test
- more than 12% of the modules that RETC subjected to simulated wind and environmental stresses achieved less than 1% degradation in power
- An increase—rather than a decrease—in measured power after LID test exposure
- Over 38% of modules achieved less than 1.0% degradation through 196 or more hours of PID test exposure.
- 8% of modules achieved less than 1.0% degradation through 196 or more hours of PID test exposure
- An introduction to the industry’s first comprehensive functionality, performance, and reliability test methodology for stationary ESS and electric vehicles (EVs)
- Sneak peak at RETC’s Hail Durability Test Protocol
“Accredited third-party testing laboratories are foundational to module quality. At its most basic level, manufacturing quality involves conformance to specifications,” commented Daniel Chang, RETC’s Vice President of Business Development. “RETC plays an important role in these efforts by testing products to relevant IEC, UL, or CEC standards. Experience has shown that simply meeting minimum certification requirements does not ensure a quality product for all project stakeholders.”
The 2020 PV Module Index report is free to download at https://retc-ca.com/pv-module-index/.
RETC, LLC is a leading engineering services and certification testing provider for renewable energy products headquartered in Fremont, CA. RETC puts customers at the forefront while bringing value at all stages—from research and development, market entry, to bankability. Since its founding in 2009, manufacturers, developers, and investors have partnered with RETC to test products from a broad range of module, inverter, storage, and racking manufacturers. Only the latest testing standards and industry-accepted methods of vetting products are used in RETC labs. RETC is united by the belief that our work is enabling a safer and more sustainable future. Let’s work together: https://retc-ca.com/
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Renewables Energy Test Center, LLC (RETC)
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