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Manufacturing Consistency: Task Group 1

Task Group 1 leads the manufacturing consistency efforts for the International Photovoltaic Quality Assurance Task Force. It started with developing a guideline for factory inspections and quality assurance during module manufacturing, followed by securing consistency for power conversion equipment manufacturing, and quality of installation and operations and maintenance services.

Complementary efforts are underway to support module durability, system verification, and communication of results.

Progress Update and Standards Activities

Task Group 1 completed a guideline published by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) as IEC TS 62941:2016, which focuses on photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing processes and procedures aiming to ensure manufacturing quality and the consistency of the produced PV modules to the warranties given by the producer. The International Organization for Standardization’s (ISO’s) standard ISO 9001:2015 is considered a starting point for compliance with the new requirements. A revision of IEC 62941 was published in 2019.

Edition 2 of IEC 62941 is currently under development in IEC working group 2. It is expected to be published late in 2025. The new edition increases requirements for maintaining the quality of lamination and solder bonding, including descriptions of some best practices such as statistical process control and regular testing of production samples; lists of parameters which are important to monitor and control (e.g. time, temperature and pressure in the laminator); and list of cases where retesting is required.

The IEC formed IEC-Renewable Energy (IECRE) to issue certificates for ensuring more confidence in the bankability of PV projects and plants. Its certificates cover component quality and appropriate system design, installation, and operation of PV plants. IECRE has completed much of what will be needed. It is also energetically promoting its certification services to the various stakeholders, including investors and financial organizations. Additionally, the certification process has been described in a series of PV-OMC Operation Documents 405 and 410.

This task group also developed a guideline for installation and operation and maintenance services published as IEC TS 63049:2017. Another guideline for power equipment manufacturing, IEC TS 63157 ED1, was drafted in late 2018 and published in November, 2019.

Related Resources

Updated Proposal for a Guide for Quality Management Systems for PV Manufacturing: Supplemental Requirements to ISO 9001-2008—This technical report provides a guideline for PV module manufacturers to produce modules that, once the design has proven to meet the quality and reliability requirements, replicate such design at an industrial scale without compromising its consistency with the requirements.

Requirements for Quality Management System for PV Module Manufacturing - This IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference paper describes Task Group 1’s work.

Task Leaders

Task group 1 is currently inactive.  We are always looking for new group or sub-group leaders.  Please contact Ingrid Repins if you are interested in leading an activity in this area.