ASTM International, the international standards group, has published the E2939-13 Standard Practice for Determining Reporting Conditions and Expected Capacity for Photovoltaic Non-Concentrator Systems – a new standard for calculating the expected generation capacity of a solar PV plant.
E2939 will make it easier for operators to test a solar project before it goes live. Prior to the release of E2939, there was no consistency in how the expected generation capacity of a solar PV plant was calculated, according to Black & Veatch Renewable Energy Consultant Evan Riley, the standard’s technical contact and primary author.
E2939 is intended to be used with the existing test method E2848 that communicates how to measure and report the capacity of newly installed solar plants. E2939, when combined with E2848, provides an accurate and rapid way to verify the performance of a PV plant under sunny conditions – important not only at the time of construction, but also as an ongoing check of correct performance and as a basis for later sale of a plant.