Cologne, Germany TUV Rheinland Group has partnered with Arizona State University (ASU) to create TUV Rheinland PTL LLC, a state-of-the-art facility in the U.S. for testing and certification of solar energy equipment.
The private venture will be based in Tempe, Arizona, leveraging TUV Rheinland's global reach and independent testing and assessment services with ASU's Photovoltaic Testing Laboratory (PTL), established in 1992. This facility has been the only lab in the United States accredited for photovoltaic (PV) design qualification and type approval. ASU's legal involvement in this venture was made possible by Arizona Technology Enterprises and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Commercial PTL Ventures, Inc.
In addition, the new joint venture was assembled and coordinated with the help of ASU's Global Institute of Sustainability (GIOS), which oversees sustainability initiatives in research, education and application at the university
The new company substantially expands PTL's testing capabilities in both volume and scope by adding state-of-the-art test equipment and the capacity to test and certify PV panels and electrical components for Europe, Asia, and North America. PTL, in turn, provides TUV Rheinland with its university knowledge base, immediate entry to the U.S. solar testing market, and the lab's long experience testing PV panels in both simulated and real outdoor environments.
TUV Rheinland PTL is a collaboration between the new company and Arizona's largest electric provider, Arizona Public Service (APS). The utility will provide 5 acres of outdoor testing space at its Solar Test and Research (STAR) Center for use by the venture to conduct outdoor endurance testing.
TUV Rheinland will be the principal investor in the new company and will develop a new facility near ASU's Tempe campus equipped with the latest advanced test technologies and equipment. The new testing facility is expected to attract solar energy manufacturers and entrepreneurs to Arizona.
TUV Rheinland is exhibiting at the Solar Power International 2008 Conference at the Photovoltaic Testing Lab Booth 1442.