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MNRE Again Extends BIS Certification of Solar Power Equipment

Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has issued a notification extending the self-certification of Solar PV inverters from December 31, 2020 to June 30, 2021 subject to the condition that manufacturer has valid International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) certificates and test reports from Ministry-recognised test labs.

The BIS certification was made compulsory to ensure the quality of components used in Solar Projects in the country.

Original MNRE Solar Certification Order and Multiple Extensions

The above mentioned BIS Certification / Registration was required under ‘Solar Photovoltaics, Systems, Devices, and Components Goods Order, 2017’ issued by the Government for compulsory registration of six products groups* included in the Schedule of the said order on September 05, 2017. Since then the deadline has been extended several times over last 3 years from the original date of 5th September 2018.

* Six Product Groups: Crystalline Silicon Terrestrial Photovoltaic (PV) modules (Si wafer based), Thin-Film Terrestrial Photovoltaic (PV) Modules (a-Si, CiGs and CdTe), PV Module (Si wafer and Thin film), Power converters for use in photovoltaic power system, Utility –Interconnected Photovoltaic inverters, Storage battery

Delays: Covid-19 and Limited Number of Solar PV Inverter Testing Facilities

Association of Solar product manufacturers in India ‘Solar Energy Federation, Power Products Manufacturers and Traders Association and Industries’ have sought more time for compliance from MNRE, and expressed their inability due to constraints and difficulties arising out of the COVID-19 Pandemic, high testing fee, and limited availability of testing facilities capable of testing up to 150 KW capacity inverters.

A document of MNRE accessed by on this order mentioned that National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), Gurgaon is the key institute for technology demonstration, validation, performance testing and certification in solar energy technologies. It is in NISE’s purview to setup test facilities in all areas of Solar PV and Solar Thermal programmes, and coordinate with CSIR (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research) Labs and R&D institutes across India to setup additional labs for solar equipment testing.