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Solar photovoltaic (PV)

Understanding Design Qualification and Type Certification Services per IEC 61215 Standard Series and IEC 62108 Standard PV Safety Testing Services per UL 1703 and IEC 61730 Standards

As the solar energy industry continues to grow, more businesses are turning to international standards to ensure the quality and safety of their products and services. Two such standards are IEC 61215, a design qualification service and IEC 62108, a type certification service. Additionally, UL 1703 and IEC 61730 provide PV safety testing services per applicable standards. This article aims to provide an overview of these services, as well as their roles in the solar energy industry.

What is Design Qualification?

Design qualification is a service offered to manufacturers and other organizations to ensure the quality, safety, and reliability of their products. To successfully qualify a product, manufacturers must adhere to strict operating guidelines and criteria set by IEC 61215. This includes providing detailed specifications for everything from component selection and installation methods to system design and operation.

In addition to ensuring a product meets the required standards for design qualification, manufacturers must also prove that their product can consistently perform to its intended purpose over its lifetime. This can be done through testing and analysis of the product’s design features using simulation models and laboratory analysis.

What is Type Certification?

Type certification is a service provided by IEC 62108 to verify that a product conforms to all established requirements for safe use in its intended application. This service includes the assessment of components, systems, processes, models, designs, installations, safety controls, installation methods, operational requirements, and implementation plans.

Unlike design qualification, type certification is not limited to just one product type or model. Instead, it is applicable across all products in a particular application or product category. For example, all types of solar panel systems that use a certain type of module or inverter could be certified under one type certificate. This ensures that these products have been tested to meet the same set of standards regardless of their model or make.

What are UL 1703 and IEC 61730?

UL 1703 is a nationwide standard for evaluating photovoltaic module safetyin the United States. It requires modules be tested for electrical safety performance according to the National Electrical Code (NEC) requirements for Class A electrical products. Additionally, UL 1703 tests modules for fire performance according to UL 94 flammability standards.

IEC 61730 is an international photovoltaic system safety standard developed by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). This standard defines how modules should be tested for electrical safety performance according to IEC 60950 requirements for Class A electrical products. Additionally, modules must also meet the safe insulation requirements for the nominal system voltage class specified by each manufacturer in order to comply with IEC 61730 standards.


Solar energy has been growing steadily in recent years as more businesses and individuals switch over from traditional sources of power generation. The International Electrical Commission (IEC) has released several standards related to the design qualification and type certification of solar energy products as well as PV safety testing services per UL 1703 and IEC 61730 standards. These services provide assurance that the product meets all applicable safety requirements before being used in any given application. Adhering to these standards helps ensure that solar energy products can operate safely and reliably while minimizing risk potentials due to substandard components or installation procedures.

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