PV Quality Program
Solarif Risk Management established a wide-ranging PV Quality Program, which helps to manage the risks involved in the different stages of investing in PV thus leading to high quality, reliable systems.
The program entails
Factory Risk Assessment
The Factory risk assessment exists of an extensive Technical Risk Assessment of the panel manufacturer’s production facilities/workshops, to verify conformance to quality standards set by Solarif and a Financial Risk Assessment which aims to determine the default risk of the manufacturer within the next years. Through this comprehensive due diligence, the quality of the panels is secured and made insurable by Solarif Insurance.
During Production Inspection (DuPro)
The During Production (DuPro) inspection is a check performed ‘During Production’ and thus apart from inspection of modules prior to shipment also enables the monitoring of the production. One key aspect of the DuPro inspection is to ensure that the modules are produced with compliant materials as otherwise material non-compliance makes the modules uncertified.
Solarif’s inspection team will be present from the beginning to the end of the production of the client’s order. The inspection team arrives prior to the start of production to allow sufficient time to verify that the correct primary materials are on-site and production processes in place.
The inspection consists of the following items:
- Bill of Materials (BoM) /Constructional Data Form (CDF) cross-checking and monitoring of primary material storage and usage conformity against applicable standards qualifications/certifications
- Production monitoring on-site at the factory
- Inspection of final module samples
- Packing and Loading supervision
- Visual inspection
- Current-voltage (I-V) measurement
- 100% Electroluminescence (EL) imaging
As primary material non-compliance is a frequent issue throughout the PV module manufacturing landscape; DuPro is usually the most recommendable inspection type.
Post-shipment Inspection (After Production & Transport)
This Pre-shipment inspection will be performed when the modules are finished, it takes place after production is complete and transport of modules to the specific destination.
This customized quality inspection (CQI) consists of three steps:
- A visit at the Manufacturer’s facilities at which the inspector performs a BOM vs. CDF conformity check including witnessing of secondary reference module calibration and a conformity check of the secondary reference module to applicable IEC standards (IEC60904-2:2015)
- An analysis of all I-V data and 100% EL images provided by the manufacturer
- An aerial drone inspection using thermal and RGB imaging
Aerial drone Inspections
Solarif Risk Management offers advanced services related to aerial data acquisition, image processing, image analysis and data presentation in a high resolution, actionable web-based platform, powered by Sitemark. Using both thermal and visual high-definition imagery, Solarif Risk Management reduces operating costs and increases the energy production as well as monitor every solar plant construction project.
Benefits of Aerial Surveys on PV sites compared to Boots-on-the-ground inspections
Cost efficient way to do entire site thermography, superior data collection, enhanced visibility into plant performance issues, utility scale surveys can be completed within hours – therefore minimizing and/or eliminating the need for ground inspections with handheld I-V curve tracers, improved on-site safety. During operation, it detects string/module failures down to cell level like hot spots, open circuit panels, heated junction boxes, diode bypasses and PID as well as giving insights in soiling/vegetation growth to optimize cleaning/grass cutting schedules.
- Design & plan the construction of your ground-based site.
- Improved understanding of field layout and topography.
- Interoperability with CAD sofware for site layout planning.
- Survey your sites on-demand and generate digital terrain and CAD models to accelerate the construction process.
- Keep track of your solar plant construction progress throughout the project life cycle.
- Reduce bidding timelines with up-to-date aerial imagery and accurate aerial data.
- Inspect solar panels for damage and mechanical failure with both thermal and visual imagery to get an overview of the health of your solar site.
- Shorten maintenance cycles and keep your solar sites running at peak efficiency.
- Every image is analysed with a state-of-the-art machine learning algorithm, and anomalies are detected, classified and localised.
The technology used is fully IEC 62446-3:2017 (International standard for thermographic inspections of solar panels) compliant, guaranteeing reliable and accurate results.
Lab Testing on samples
In addition to the Factory Risk Assessments and different inspection types; a specific number of module samples will be randomly taken out of the inspected batches and provided to one of the independent Laboratory Testing Facilities for environmental stress testing.
Some of the performed stress tests on module samples are, amongst other:
- I-V measurement test under Standard Test Conditions
- Low irradiance test
- EVA Gel content test
- PID test
- Materials Creep Test