UL provides services for solar photovoltaic products, systems and plants.
UL 1703 / UL 61730 – PV Module Safety Standards Updates: Making the Transition
Global commerce depends upon the use of technically valid standards. Most manufacturers today do business across the globe and have their PV modules evaluated to multiple safety standards which is costly and in some cases result in duplication of effort. UL actively pursues harmonization to IEC standards when there is alignment to existing U.S. safety requirements. Last year, UL harmonized its PV module safety Standard to IEC 61730, and on December 4th published UL 61730, the North America and International safety Standard for PV modules. The Standard contains U.S. national differences and complies with the National Electric Code. It also includes new and updated requirements to address innovation in component technology and materials. A few requirements are more stringent than those for UL 1703 certified products and if a bill of material (BOM) change is in your future, retesting to UL 61730 may be required.
UL understands the impact of standard(s) changes on our customers’ business which is why the Standards Technical Panel (STP) determines a reasonable timeframe within which “new” products should be certified to UL 61730. Once manufacturers serving international markets assess the benefits and cost savings of testing new products to the harmonized standard, they should plan to have it done before December 4, 2019. After this date, all new product submittals will be tested to UL 61730. To further ease the impact on our customers, after December, 4, 2019 products previously certified to UL 1703 may continue to apply the UL label in the factory. However, if a “critical component” in the BOM changes then a full evaluation to UL 61730 will be required to continue to apply the UL label.
Our services are designed to help photovoltaic (PV) energy industry customers meet their demanding product launch dates while managing the risks that rapid innovation can bring to a project. Our team of industry experts helps our customers get the engineering input and support they need, when they need it. We work to identify potential noncompliance issues early in the process to help avoid costly late-stage remediation and possible go-to-market delays. As a trusted independent technical advisory, testing, inspection and certification body, we empower trust throughout the project lifecycle and across the value chain. We offer a comprehensive portfolio of services for materials, components, products and systems.
Our technical advisory services help stakeholders plan, design, finance, build, invest, operate, maintain, and manage solar energy projects. Performance services provide evidence to purchasers, investors, financiers and other stakeholders that products meet current PV/solar industry test requirements or expectations for market access testing. Safety, performance and verification services can also help confirm manufacturers’ independent value claims. We offer a suite of PV plant services that help manage risk associated with building and operating a PV plant, providing technical information and data for energy yield assessments (EYAs), technical due diligence, and measurements and inspection. Our extensive, flexible service portfolio covers needs that range from project planning and construction, asset management and ongoing operations and maintenance.
Our safety, performance and verification testing services provide a critical check on PV/solar products against all key standards. We also offer customized testing services for research on and evaluation of new designs, as well as testing to determine whether products meet the qualification requirements for energy-saving incentive programs.