Following two years in development, a draft of the industry’s first standard on the assembly of solar panels, IPC-8701, Visual Acceptance Criteria for Solar Panels - Final Module Assembly, was released today for industry review and comment. IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries® is seeking industry comments through February 9, 2012.
According to Dave Torp, vice president of standards and technology for IPC, solar standard development has been an evolutionary process. “Initially, IPC was approached by a few of our core members who were looking to fill the gaps within the abundance of solar standards,” says Torp. Over the last few years, several IPC members entered the highly competitive solar panel assembly market and discovered they needed additional guidance - guidance that, Torp says, “… IPC members knew they could count on IPC to provide.”
“While there is a huge amount of solar standards available from many organizations, no standard focused on assembly,” explains Torp. “IPC differentiates itself by sticking to our manufacturing roots and providing best practices for the assembly of solar panels.”
The draft of IPC-8701 covers visual inspection criteria for crystalline solar panels. These modules are the most common form of panel assembly found in the solar industry and ripe for standards development activity. “Standards drive innovation through dissemination of best practices and allow the entire supply chain to use a common language,” adds Torp.
IPC-8701 is in working draft format and is being circulated for industry review and comment. The draft of the standard can be downloaded (.pdf) from www.ipc.org/draft-IPC-8701. Comments on the draft of IPC-8701 must be submitted using the comment form (.pdf) at www.ipc.org/comments-IPC-8701.
Industry comments on the draft of IPC-8701 are being solicited until February 9, 2012. All comments will be reviewed by the IPC E-15 subcommittee at its mid-February meeting in San Jose, Calif.
For more information, contact Torp at DaveTorp@ipc.org.
IPC (www.IPC.org) is a global trade association based in Bannockburn, Ill., dedicated to the competitive excellence and financial success of its 3,100 member companies which represent all facets of the electronics industry, including design, printed board manufacturing, electronics assembly and test. As a member-driven organization and leading source for industry standards, training, market research and public policy advocacy, IPC supports programs to meet the needs of an estimated $2.02 trillion global electronics industry. IPC maintains additional offices in Taos, N.M.; Arlington, Va.; Stockholm, Sweden; Moscow, Russia; Bangalore, India; and Shanghai, Shenzhen and Beijing, China.