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Prestandardisation activities for the certification of roofs and facades with integrated photovoltaic modules


One of the barriers that currently impede large scale application of PV in buildings is low confidence by utilities and builders in PV as a building material. A major cause is the lack of certified building elements containing photovoltaic cells. To enable the use of PV building components in the regular building process, certification is essential.
Testing and certification on a European level will increase acceptance of BIPV by both builders and utilities. Additionally, it is expected that certification of PV building components will lead to an improved constructional and electrical performance of building integrated PV (BIPV). This will be of great value for PV to become a major renewable energy source in the next century.
Today, PV modules are successfully tested and certified according to IEC 1215. However, PV/building components are being developed that cannot be tested under IEC 1215. Additionally, no electrical and constructional performance qualifications are available for BIPV systems on a system level. Therefore new test sequences have to be defined for the certification of multifunctional building elements with integrated PV modules.
PRESCRIPT aims to carry out the prenormative design of European standards for solar cell integrated building elements for roofs and facade systems. Testing and certification of PV building components will have to concentrate on two aspects of BIPV systems:
- The constructional performance as a building component, e.g. a roofing material or a facade cladding. The PV system has to meet all regular building criteria (water tightness, strength, durability, fire resistance, thermal properties etc.).
- The electrical performance of the PV building component, as a buildingintegrated power source.
The core activity of PRESCRIPT will be the definition of European prestandards for testing procedures and certification criteria. These prestandards will be derived from:
- conventional (well accepted!) building codes in all EU countries; - JRC guidelines concerning the electrical performance;
- IEC documents.
Expected achievements of PRESCRIPT are:
- a penormative design of European testing procedures and quality recommendations (or certification criteria) for PV building components, - benchmarked prestandards that will serve as input to be established New Working Item of the IEC TC 82 and EOTA or any other relevant building certification and standardisation entity in Europe.
The final report will be offered to IEC TC 82 as input for a New Working Item, and EOTA or any other relevant building certification and standardisation entity in Europe.

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