Updates of IEC standards published recently

Edition 3 for qualification testing of PV module designs combines IEC 61215 and IEC 61646.

The first 6 parts are published; other parts will be published in the next few months.

Already published documents include:

IEC 61215-1:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 1: Test requirements

IEC 61215-1-1:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 1-1: Special requirements for testing of crystalline silicon photovoltaic (PV) modules

IEC 61215-1-2:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 1-2: Special requirements for testing of thin-film Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) based photovoltaic (PV) modules

IEC 61215-1-3:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 1-3: Special requirements for testing of thin-film amorphous silicon based photovoltaic (PV) modules

IEC 61215-1-4:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 1-4: Special requirements for testing of thin-film Cu(In,GA)(S,Se)2 based photovoltaic (PV) modules

IEC 61215-2:2016: Terrestrial photovoltaic (PV) modules – Design qualification and type approval – Part 2: Test procedures

 

Edition 2 for PV module safety testing:

IEC 61730-1:2016: Photovoltaic (PV) module safety qualification – Part 1: Requirements for construction

IEC 61730-2:2016: Photovoltaic (PV) module safety qualification – Part 2: Requirements for testing

 

What has changed in the latest edition of IEC 61215?

IEC 61215 Edition 3 technical changes with respect to Edition 2 include:

–       The document was divided into two primary parts: Part 1 lists general requirements and Part 2 defines testing.

–       IEC 61646 was merged with IEC 61215 by including light exposure (pre-conditioning) procedures that are technology specific in a set of documents: silicon (Part 1-1), cadmium telluride (Part 1-2), amorphous silicon (Part 1-3), and Cu(In,Ga)(S,Se)2 (Part 1-4). Customers who previously requested IEC 61646 testing should now request testing to IEC 61215.

–       The marking requirements for nameplate and general documentation have been better defined.

–       Pass/fail criteria have been divided into two “gates.” Gate #1 verifies the accuracy of the nameplate rating initially and gate #2 defines the acceptable power loss after accelerated aging testing.

–       The hot-spot endurance test was revised with the intention of reducing the frequency of observing problems related to reverse bias of cells in the field.

–       Replacement of NOCT (nominal operating cell temperature) with NMOT (nominal module operating temperature) to reflect the operating temperature of the module under the appropriate bias condition.

–       Robustness of terminations test includes evaluation of both cables and junction boxes.

 

What has changed in the latest edition of IEC 61730?

IEC 61730 Edition 2 technical changes with respect to Edition 1 include multiple changes to improve alignment with other IEC standards including:

–       Implementation of insulation coordination, overvoltage category, classes, pollution degree (PD), and material groups (MG).

–       Definition of creepage (cr), clearance (cl) and distance through insulation.

–       Inclusion of IEC 60664 and IEC 61140.

–       Implementation of component qualification.

–       IEC Guide 108 Guidelines for ensuring the coherency of IEC publications – Application of horizontal standards.

 

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