Standardizing Solar Photovoltaic Energy

SESKO organised a seminar on solar photovoltaic energy which was attended by more than ten field experts. Four experts took to the floor to give a talk, two of whom spoke about standardization in the field (Juha Vesa and Arto Sirviö, SESKO ry). In addition, Atte Kallio (HELEN) gave a presentation on the energy company activity in relation to solar power and Jero Ahola from Lappeenranta University of Technology spoke about the subject from the university’s point of view.

Status of Standardization

In their presentations Juha Vesa and Arto Sirviö explained that the growth in the field has affected the global energy market and that the operational environment will change alongside the new concepts, regulations and standardization. In Finland as well, the interest for using solar power has grown significantly in the last couple of years.

In IEC, the committee in charge of standardization of the solar photovoltaic energy is IEC TC 82 Solar photovoltaic energy systems. The committee was established in 1981 so it has a long tradition of creating standards in the field. Now the committee has almost 80 published standards, technical reports and specifications. It is working on 64 new subjects of standardization.
The European CENELEC TC 82 was established in 2002and it clearly focuses on the European requirements, such as fulfilling the requirements for different directives (EMC, LVD, CPR). A large part of the standards prepared in IEC are enforced as EN standards, and then also Finnish SFS-EN standards, as they are or with European changes.

Amongst others, the following trends can currently be seen in the solar power standardization:
  • Different panel technologies
  • Alternating current solar panels
  • Super intelligent power inverters
  • Quality, reliability and accessibility of the photovoltaic energy systems
  • Harmonisation oh the planning and instalment standards
  • Local energy supply

SESKO has created a SFS handbook, SFS-käsikirja 607 Aurinkosähköjärjestelmät (in Finnish only), which includes a selection of standards related to solar photovoltaic energy.

    Solar Power from an Energy Company

    Atte Kallio in his presentation spoke about Finland’s largest solar power plant built by HELEN in Suvilahti in Helsinki, which was completed in March 2015. Customers can acquire their own solar panel from the power plant by monthly subscription and then receive the electricity supplied by that panel for their own use. The panels were sold out in just a few days. This proves the customer interest is high in this sort of schemes.

    From the point of view of the customers hiring their own panel, this scheme doesn’t require the large initial investment of buying and installing a panel. Due to there being a large number of panels available, this is also cost efficient in comparison to a single panel system. Customers can follow the energy supply of their own panel in real time online and via a mobile application.

     As a whole, the solar power plant enables clean energy production in a city environment, i.e. where the energy is used the most. The power plants reduce carbon dioxide emissions and increase the production of domestic renewable energy. Solar power plant is easy to realise both in small and larger scale.

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    University’s Solar Power News

    Jero Ahola from Lappeenranta University of Technology focused his speech on the global production, building costs and storage of solar power. Detail on these and other subjects can be found in his presentation.

    He, as a representative of the university, wanted to highlight the following parts in the future solar photovoltaic energy standardization

    • The main goal should be on ensuring electrical safety and cost efficiency
    • The standardization of solar photovoltaic energy relates closely to standardization in many other sectors and co-operation with the different technical committees is necessary. Amongst others, these areas are:
      • Electric cars
      • Electrical energy storage
      • Heating and cooling buildings
      • Energy demand
    Further information: Arto Sirviö

    Back to Newsletter 2-16

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