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Great interest in course in inspection of solar cells

There is a lot of interest in Glava Energy Center's newly started course Inspection of solar cell installations. The crowded premiere round in mid-October was attended by inspectors, supervisors and project managers as well as solar cell and electrical installers from both Sweden and Norway. A new round of courses is now being arranged on 24-25 January 2024.

– There is a boom in the solar energy industry, great competition among the installation companies and, unfortunately, varying quality in the solar cell installations. Many residential customers want an independent party to inspect the solar installations and we predict a high demand for such third party inspections. We already offer inspections today but want to invest more in it and this training fits well in that context, says course participant Anders Ekelund at Novus Energy in Karlshamn.

Increased understanding of what an inspection entails

The number of new installations of solar cells and batteries breaks records every year in Sweden, but parallel to the positive industry development there are warning signs. The number of fault reports is increasing, the Swedish Electrical Safety Authority and insurance companies are warning of a lack of installation work and the industry itself is warning of a lack of qualified labour.

To meet the need for safe installations and facilities, Glava Energy Center has started an inspection course that aims to strengthen quality, safety and continued positive development in the solar energy industry.

– This course provides an understanding of what an inspection is and what an inspector looks for in a solar energy plant. We go through the rules and regulations and what is required to be able to become a certified inspection person. It is important to understand that it is a long process to become certified. You have to build up your knowledge over time and it takes, for example, many years of documented work with inspections, says course instructor Per Hederstedt, solar cell specialist at Maple Energy and certified contractor inspector with 20 years of work experience in the electricity industry.

Can strengthen companies' self-monitoring programs

The course also addresses common fault reports during inspections, fault identification in an authentic environment in Glava Energy Center's solar park and preventive work to minimize the number of faulty installations. In addition, the course covers various inspection techniques such as mapping faults and defects in a solar cell installation using drones and thermography, i.e. heat images. The course content was appreciated by all participants, including those who do not mainly work with inspections.

- By learning what an inspector looks for in a facility, we can improve the company's self-inspection program and thus continue to deliver high quality to our customers. It's fast and there's a lot happening in the solar energy industry, so this kind of skill development has to go on all the time, says course participant Alfred Eriksson, assembly manager at SunCity in Karlstad.

Hope that the course can strengthen good inspection practice

On site at the premiere round of the course in October 2023 were inspectors, supervisors, project managers and solar cell and electrical installers. The course leader Per Hederstedt thinks that the course attracts a wide range of participants is both interesting and good.

– A broadened understanding of the duties and responsibilities of inspectors, even among installers, is good for the solar cell industry as a whole. Unfortunately, it happens that an inspection leads to a charged situation and, in the worst case, conflict between the contractor and the inspection person. So I hope that the course itself, and the breadth of course participants, can contribute to strengthening a good and constructive inspection practice within the industry, says Per Hederstedt.

The course evaluation showed satisfied participants – both the teacher and the course content were appreciated. All participants also felt that the content of the training was relevant to their work.

– The great interest in the course and the fine course evaluation confirm our belief that Glava Energy Center, as an independent training provider, can play an important role when it comes to strengthening competence and quality within the industry. After the premiere round of the inspection course, we are now planning for certain improvements, for example extended time for fault identification in the solar park, says Liselott Öberg Stridh, member and training manager at Glava Energy Center.

New course opportunity 24-25 January 2024

Glava Energy Center's 2-day training on inspection of solar cell installations includes theory and practical training in the form of fault identification in an authentic environment in Glava Energy Center's solar park. The course provides in-depth knowledge about inspection of solar cells and the general guidelines and regulations that exist. Members of the Glava Energy Center receive a 10 percent discount on the course fee. The next course is 24–25 January 2024. Register via the calendar.



Picture 1: Course teacher Per Hederstedt performs error identification using drones and temography.
Picture 2: Course participants from the Norwegian energy company Aneo take a closer look at the drone's remote control.
Picture 3: Course participant Anders Ekelund at Novus Energy in Karlshamn in the solar park.

Last edited: 10/11 2023