- PVEL’s 2022 PV Module Reliability Scorecard sees improvement across various tests for various modules studied
- Under Thermal Cycling, the report saw the best results in its history, thanks to MBB technology
- In the Damp Heat segment, it recorded the worst results in its history as greatest number of failures occurred in this category
- Almost all BOMs tested in this category were top performers thanks mainly to advancements in cell doping
The newly released 8th edition of PV Module Reliability Scorecard of PV Evolution Labs (PVEL) evaluates 122 modules from 25 manufacturers, showing ‘resilience’ of the global solar industry despite various obstacles ranging from raw material supply disruption to logistics bottlenecks.
“The 2022 PV Module Reliability Scorecard is a testament to the resilience of an industry that is relentlessly pursuing the deployment of reliable solar power – no matter what obstacles arise. We know that the world is counting on us for the transition to clean energy,” said PVEL CEO Jenya Meydbray. “At PVEL, we create the data that matters for a greener future, and we’re pleased to report that results have improved across many of our tests.”
The independent lab for downstream solar and energy storage industry, PVEL assesses solar modules to demonstrate bankability of the solar technology. Compared to the 2021 Scorecard, PVEL said fewer manufacturers experienced a failure this year, one quarter of bills of materials (BOM) suffered at least 1 failure during testing (see PVEL’s 2021 PV Module Reliability Scorecard Out).
Modules were assessed in the following categories:
Thermal Cycling (TC): The report calls TC results for this year the ‘best’ in its history as more than 70% of BOMs tested were multi busbar (MBB) which achieved better test results. However, 2 BOMs having cleared IEC 61215 TC 200 requirements degraded by more than 5% on the PVEL TC 600 test. The lab believes this shows accelerated testing is necessary for risk mitigation.
Damp Heat (DH): Greatest number of failures occurred during the DH sequence, according to the analysts. In fact, even as 50% of BOMs achieved top-performing results after the full test sequence, but one BOM degraded by 54% ‘the worst DH result in PVEL history’. There was also 67% drop in BOMs requiring boron-oxygen (BO) stabilization making it easier for buyers to interpret DH test results.
“Many BOMs with concerning DH results came from manufacturers that are listed as Top Performers for other model types. This proves small component changes can severely impact reliability,” stated PVEL.
Mechanical Stress Sequence (MSS): Analysts observed a ‘significant number of failures’ even as 72% of BOMs are top performers in the MSS category. Most common failure mode was broken glass, not cell-level damage. “Glass/backsheet BOMs were more susceptible to cell cracking, but less susceptible to glass breakage,” reads the report.
Potential-induced degradation (PID): Noting that PID is more likely to occur in projects that use transformerless inverters, PVEL said the results improved markedly as compared to 2021 when it reported the highest mean and median rates in its history. Yet ‘PID remains unsolved’. “While BOMs with EVA encapsulants were Top Performers, BOMs with POE encapsulants were generally less susceptible to PID,” it stated,
Light-Induced Degradation+Light-and-elevated temperature-induced degradation (LID+LETID): Almost all BOMs tested in this category were top performers thanks mainly to advancements in cell doping.
PAN Performance: The report notes that all PAN Top Performers are bifacial. The average bifacial model type had a 7% higher specific energy yield than the average monofacial model type for the Las Vegas simulation, noted PVEL.
Several of the leading companies published press releases on their top performance in the recent PVEL test. “With six consecutive Scorecard appearances, LONGi continues to demonstrate quality, reliability and performance in its PV modules through PVEL’s testing,” said Tristan Erion-Lorico, VP of Sales and Marketing at PVEL in a LONGi press release. He added, “Not only that, but one of LONGi’s models was named a Top Performer in all six testing categories—a rare feat.” JinkoSolar announced, “JinkoSolar is one of only two module manufacturers to have been rated as a Top Performer for eight consecutive times since it was introduced in 2014.” The other company that had eight recognitions in a row is Trina Solar, which emphasized, “Test results published by PVEL show that the ultra-high power 210mm Vertex modules, 670W in particular, have achieved the best performance in the Product Qualification Program (PQP) test sequences.” These three companies, LONGi, JinkoSolar and Trina Solar will all speak at the TaiyangNews Intersolar Munich Review Virtual Conference, which will reflect on the learnings from Intersolar Europe and discuss the latest product innovations of Tier 1 companies with speakers of all world leading module producers participating. The Conference will take place from May 24-25 2022. Join us. For #FreeRegistration, please click here.
Details of the PV Module Reliability Scorecard are available on PVEL’s website.