Calling out the black sheep! Part 1: Module quality


At the pv magazine roundtable “Quality of Rooftop Systems" at Intersolar 2015, a group of 100 experts from planning, installation and EPC companies discussed how to ensure sufficient quality in solar panels.

There was a near consensus that it made sense to perform extensive, site-specific random testing – the trouble is, such testing is not realistic for many companies because it is simply too expensive for small and medium-sized purchasing volumes. The result is that a good many companies rely on their experience with manufacturers. An exchange between experts would improve this state of affairs – at least, that was the idea. Such an exchange would have to be conducted in private and moderated to ensure that the contributions could be reviewed and were constructive.

pv magazine was asked to set up a platform for this exchange. We’d like to follow up on that request, with your help, by researching vulnerabilities, presenting the findings, and facilitating potential solutions. All of the input you provide will be treated with the utmost confidentiality.

Please send us information about any problems you’ve experienced, e.g.: failure to comply with specifications, excessively rapid aging, problems with false certificates, lack of solvency when warranty claims are filed, less than accommodating service – in other words, anything that has bothered you in the past.

Please send your input to: michael.fuhs(at) and/or gifford(at)

(put “black sheep” in the subject line)

We will treat all of your e-mails with the strictest confidentiality. Everything we do with the information will be coordinated with you.

Closed Web forum as the next step

We also plan to set up a closed web forum and to moderate it. The forum will be available only to registered users in order to create a protected space. It should be possible, either anonymously via pv magazine editors or publically within the closed forum to exchange experiences. We will also offer to moderate between participants and manufacturers in order to find constructive solutions. Please write us if you have any suggestions in this regard.

We need more transparency. That’s why it is time to speak openly. We at pv magazine want to create a safe space, enable a free exchange of experiences and mediate between those involved to find a solution! Help us and the whole industry by by providing your input. We’ll all benefit!