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Test & Measurement | June 02, 2008

UL to speed up certification for German photovoltaic products

Underwriters Laboratories (UL), with offices in Neu-Isenburg and Munich, Germany, will – this year – increase its international capacity in the field of photovoltaic.
UL certification is expanding its capacity with technical expertise in Germany. Until now, German solar companies were hampered by a constant shortage of testing and certification of their photovoltaic products - the global markets reports an annual increase of demand by 30% for solar modules. Thanks to the increased auditing capacity and the related shorter certification cycle, UL now ensures that future solar products can enter the market faster, even in North America.

The UL certification is a fundamental element for the entry into the market in the United States and Canada. UL also supports German engineers and manufacturers of photovoltaic products already in the design and development phase. This ensures that products such as solar inverters of SMA technology can fulfil specific safety requirements of the U.S. market easily.

At the same time, the company – with an investment of several million euros – is currently in the final phase of establishing a modern testing and certification laboratories for photovoltaic products in Silicon Valley, California and Suzhou, China. The laboratory in California, the Underwriters Laboratories Photovoltaic Technology Center of Excellence, is one of the world's largest of its kind.

The construction of the 1,858 sqm UL test centre in Silicon Valley will be completed in summer 2008. The new laboratory ensures that UL can work even closer with photovoltaic companies in the future, on new technologies such as CVP (Concentrated solar energy), thin-film modules, or CIGS CdTe in serial production.

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