Distributed PV Power Plants Certified in Japan

August 03, 2016 by Jeff Shepard

Today TUV Rheinland Japan Ltd. announced its new certification program intended for stakeholders who construct distributed commercial PV systems in Japan. This third party certification program for PV power plants is a service that combines company qualification, inspections, and a certification system to ensure and enhance the quality, safety, and performance of the PV power plants.

Distributed commercial PV systems continue to emerge rapidly around the world, and in Japan this middle segment represents the largest market for PV Power Plants. Access to funds promotes growth for distributed solar projects, particularly in the middle market segment which is largely dominated by factory businesses, and building rooftops. One of the primary obstacles in securing financial funding is the lack of systematic technical quality assessments at affordable prices. The lack of these assessments deters banks and financial entities from supporting and investing in these smaller distributed PV companies.

In order to support these companies, TUV Rheinland took every effort to lower technical evaluation costs to a fraction of what they once were, while at the same time enhancing the quality, safety, and performance of the commercial rooftop PV system market. TUV Rheinland's certification program employs a unique approach for systematically minimizing technical risks and conducting technical evaluation proofs, thereby enabling all types of investors to finally access the middle segment commercial market at an attractive and affordable price. This program is a triumph for owners, EPCs, and all other solar stakeholders. Large scale investments will view this certification as a real technical Due Diligence option towards a non-FIT based market.

The new independent PV Power Plant Certification Program also allows third party certification of plants to be transferred to new ownership during the re-financing process. This increases the PV asset value, allowing for a full range of new commercial flexibility and benefits in the current and future solar securitization market. This certification opens many new commercial opportunities for all types of initial and resale transactions of PV power plants.

"We have been active in the market for distributed PV systems, and with the launch of this new certification program, we will work to help accelerate the growth of this industry," said Holger Kunz, Executive Vice President Products of TUV Rheinland. "This accelerated growth will make clean energy more accessible. In addition to Japan, countries across Asia Pacific will come to benefit from PV systems certified by TUV Rheinland."

At present, TUV Rheinland has successfully implemented and inspected 31 commercial distributed PV systems with this program in Japan made by TESS Engineering that total over 42MW. These systems are projects run by Global Logistics Properties (GLP). Japan is the first market for the distributed commercial PV System business in the Asia Pacific region to adopt this certification program from TUV Rheinland.