27 Nov '13, 2pm

New Tests Help Make Solar Panel Moisture Barriers Better

Standing between that nefarious moisture and the device at hand is a transparent film barrier that must work flawlessly year after year, even decade after decade. Now there is a test that can detect infinitesimally small amounts of moisture — and that can therefore give much greater assurance that the barrier films will last. Developed by the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the NREL Electric Calcium Test, or e-Ca, uses unique design elements to measure corrosion from water using calcium. Industry durability standards for PV modules call for tests lasting 1,000 hours in damp heat conditions. Module manufacturers want to be assured that any barriers they use will be able to pass the moisture-blocking test, so they can focus on optimizing the rest of the module. And they want to make sure that anything they buy has passed rigorous quality cont...

Full article: http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2013...

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