Tony Sample completed a degree in Chemistry in 1986 and doctorate in Inorganic Chemistry in 1990 at the University of Nottingham. Throughout the early 1990’s he held a number of posts at European research organisations covering a range of material science related issues, specialising in corrosion.
In 1998 he joined the Renewable Energies Unit of the European Commissions Joint Research Centre as part of the staff of the European Solar Test Installation (ESTI). Since this time he has been active in the areas of module measurement and testing, in particular Module Qualification testing and lifetime assessment of PV modules. He is the current convenor of WG1 of the CENELEC TC82 and participates as in invited expert in the IEC TC82 WG2 on cells and modules.
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Qualification testing and beyond
This presentation describes the current status of qualification testing for PV modules and outlines the relationships between field results, accelerated stress tests and qualification tests. The limitations of the use of qualification tests will be discussed and the future developments of type approval standards will be outlined.
Looking beyond qualification testing, an overview of the ongoing international efforts to develop standards by the International Photovoltaic Quality Assurance Task Force (PVQAT) and the IECRE (the newest Conformity Assessment System in the IEC) will concentrate on the following;
- Qualifying the design for the intended application (climate zone and mounting configuration)
- Quality management systems for PV module manufacturing
- System-level inspections to ensure appropriate design, installation, commissioning, and operation of PV systems