You are on page 1of 100

LOCAL CODE OF PRACTICE

ON PHOTOVOLTAIC
INSTALLATION
Singapore Standard SS CP 5:
1998
Amendment No. 1
LOCAL CODE OF PRACTICE ON
PHOTOVOLTAIC INSTALLATION
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
CODE OF PRACTICE FOR ELECTRICAL INSTALLATIONS
(Singapore Standard SS CP 5: 1998 Amendment No. 1)
Add new Section 612 under Part 6 Special installation or
locations :
Section 612 Solar photovoltaic (PV) power supply systems --
- under Public Comments till 9 Oct 2008
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
GRID TIE SYSTEM : BOTH GRID POWER SUPPLY AND PV
POWER SUPPLY CONNECT IN PARALLEL TO THE LOAD
PV systems may be connected to the electrical installation within
your (residential or non-residential) premises to generate
electricity for your own use. Any excess power may be sold into
the wholesale electricity market through the power grid owned by
SP PowerAssets (SPPA).
This Handbook gives an overview of the current licensing,market
and technical requirements to ensure safety, reliability and power
quality of your electrical installation and of the power grid.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
2 Electricity Licensing Requirements
2.1 If you generate electricity by means of a PV system with less
than 1W generation capacity:
(a) You are not required to hold a Generation Licence to be
authorised to generate electricity from the PV system; and
(b) It is optional for you to register with the wholesale electricity
market, which is called the NEMS (National Electricity Market of
Singapore). You need to register with the NEMS only if you wish
to sell and get paid for the electricity you inject into the power grid.
However if you are a residential electricity consumer, please refer
to section 7.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
4 Electrical Safety Requirements
4.1 An electrical installation refers to any electrical wiring, fitting or
apparatus used for the conveyance and control of electricity in any
premises. Any PV system connected to the electrical installation is
considered part of the installation.
4.2 Electrical installations are licensed by EMA to ensure they are
operated and maintained by licensed electrical workers (LEWs), and
are safe to use.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
4 Electrical Safety Requirements
Engaging a LEW
4.3 You are required to engage a LEW to carry out any electrical work on
your electrical installation. Your appointed LEW will be responsible
for the design, installation, testing, commissioning and maintenance
of your electrical installation. This includes installing and connecting
any PV system to the electrical installation within your premises.
4.4 There are 3 classes of LEWs: Licensed Electrician, Licensed
Electrical Technician, and Licensed Electrical Engineer. The various
classes of LEWs are authorised to design, install, repair, maintain,
operate, inspect and test electrical installations according to the
conditions stated below:
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
4 Electrical Safety Requirements
Engaging a LEW
4.3 You are required to engage a LEW to carry out any electrical work
on
your electrical installation. Your appointed LEW will be responsible
for the design, installation, testing, commissioning and maintenance
of your electrical installation. This includes installing and connecting
any PV system to the electrical installation within your premises.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
4 Electrical Safety Requirements
Engaging a LEW
4.4 There are 3 classes of LEWs: Licensed Electrician, Licensed
Electrical Technician, and Licensed Electrical Engineer. The various
classes of LEWs are authorised to design, install, repair, maintain,
operate, inspect and test electrical installations according to the
conditions stated below:
Electrician Not exceeding 45 kVA 1000V & below
Electrical Technician Not exceeding 150 Kva (Design); not
exceeding500 kVA (Operation) 1000V & below
Electrical Engineer No limit Subject to licence conditions
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
4 Electrical Safety Requirements
Engaging a LEW
4.5 The Singapore standard for electrical safety applicable to PV
systems is set out in the Code of Practice for Electrical Installations
(Singapore Standard CP5:1998), which is published by SPRING
Singapore. A summary of the relevant electrical safety standards and
requirements are set out in Appendix 2. The LEW whom you appoint
to install and connect your PV system will be responsible for
compliance with the relevant safety standards and requirements.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
5 Connecting to the Power Grid
5.1 If you intend to connect and operate your PV system in parallel to the
power grid, your appointed LEW will have to consult SPPAs agent,
SP PowerGrid (SPPG) on the connection scheme and the technical
requirements.
5.2 A summary of the consultation process to connect your PV system to
the power grid, is given in Appendix 3. The following documents set
out the detailed consultation process and technical requirements:
(a) the Transmission Code and the Metering Code, which are
published at the following EMA websites:
http://www.ema.gov.sg/doc/transmission_code.pdf
http://www.ema.gov.sg/doc/metering_code.pdf
(b) SPPGs handbook entitled How to Apply for Electricity
Connection, which is published at the following SPPA website:
http://www.sppowerassets.com.sg/PDF/howtoapply.pdf
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
6 Buildings & Construction Safety
6.1 There may be safety standards and
requirements for buildings and
construction applicable to the
implementation of your PV system.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
7 Further Information for Residential PV
Systems
7.1 For electrical safety reasons, a residential
electricity consumer is required to have his PV
system installed and connected to his electrical
installation by an LEW (see section 4.6 on
search for LEWs). However, the residential
consumer is not required to hold an Electrical
Installation Licence to use or operate his
electrical installation with the PV system
connected.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
7 Further Information for Residential PV Systems
7.2 The residential consumer will have to apply to SP Services (SPS)
by following the application procedure set out in Appendix 3. If the
residential consumer will export electricity into the power grid and
wants to get compensated for the electricity exported, SPS will make
arrangements for the compensation by way of a credit adjustment in
the monthly electricity bill to the residential consumer. The credit
adjustment will effectively compensate the residential consumer for
the amount of electricity he exports into the power grid during that
month based on the prevailing low-tension electricity tariff rate less
the grid charge. (Note: This scheme to compensate residential
electricity consumers for the electricity they export into the power grid
is not applicable to those residential consumers whose electricity
consumption is metered under the master-sub metering scheme.)
* *
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
1 A solar photovoltaic power supply system (PV system) installed
within a premises forms part of the consumers electrical installation and
shall comply with the requirements stipulated in the Electricity Act (cap.
89A), the Electricity (Electrical Installations) Regulations, and the
Singapore Standard Code of Practice CP5: 1998 for Electrical Installations.
2 Reference shall also be made to IEC 60364-7-712 or BS 7671 for
the technical terms and additional guides for PV systems. These shall be
read in conjunction with the following parts of CP5:
Part 3: Assessment of general characteristics
Part 4: Protection for safety
Part 5: Selection and erection of equipment
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
3 Special attention shall be paid to the following:2
(a) The protective measures for automatic disconnection of
supply as stipulated in Part 4 shall be complied with. The
protective measures of non-conducting location (clause 413-
04) and earth-free local equipment bonding (clause 413-05)
are not permitted on the d.c. side of the PV system;
(b) PV modules shall comply with the requirements of the
relevant equipment standards, for example IEC 61215 for
crystalline PV modules. Other accessories such as PV array
junction box, PV generator junction box and switchgear
assemblies shall comply with the requirements of IEC
60439-1;
(c) Protection by use of Class II or equivalent insulation shall
preferably be adopted on the d.c. side of the PV system;
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
3 Special attention shall be paid to the following:
(d) The PV equipment shall be arranged so as to facilitate its
operation, inspection and maintenance and access to each
connection (clause 513-01-01L). The provisions made by
the manufacturer of the PV equipment for safe maintenance
and service work shall not to be affected;
(e) Single-core sheathed cables shall be used for d.c. wiring to
minimize the risk of earth faults and short circuits;
(f) Means of isolation for the PV system shall comply with
clause 537-02. To allow maintenance of the PV inverter,
means of isolating the PV inverter from the d.c. side and the
a.c. side shall be provided;
(g) All junction boxes shall carry a warning label indicating that
the parts inside the boxes may still be live after isolation
from the PV inverter (see IEC 712.537.2.5.1);
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
3 Special attention shall be paid to the following:
(h) For a PV system operating in parallel with the power grid,
the power grid supply shall be considered the source, and
the electrical installation with the PV system connected shall
be considered the load. The PV inverters shall be
configured to:
protect the a.c. side of the PV inverter from being
connected out-of-synchronism with the power grid
supply; and
automatically disconnect the PV supply upon loss of
supply from the power grid;
automatically disconnect the PV supply when the
direct current injection into the power grid by the PV
system exceeds 20 mA. An isolating transformer is
preferably installed on the a.c. side of the PV inverter
to eliminate the possibility of PV system injecting
direct current into the power grid;
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
3 Special attention shall be paid to the following:
(i) Appropriate protection facilities shall be provided in the PV
system to:
disconnect the PV system from power grid supply in
the event of fault occurring in the PV system;
avoid danger to the PV system caused by transient
abnormalities of the power grid supply such as voltage
and frequency fluctuation, voltage dip, etc;
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 2: Electrical Safety Standards and
Requirements
Applicable to PV Systems
3 Special attention shall be paid to the following:
(j) The PV system supply cable on the a.c. side shall be
protected against short-circuit current by an overcurrent
protective device installed at the connection to the a.c.
supply (see diagram below); and
(k) It is the responsibility of the consumers to have their PV
systems maintained regularly to ensure the safe operation
of their PV systems and electrical installations.
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
HANDBOOK FOR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) SYSTEMS
- SEPT 2007, EMA (available from EMAs web)
Appendix 3: Consultation Process to Install and Connect PV Systems to the Power Grid
PV system owner to engage a Licensed Electrical Worker (LEW) to
take charge of installing and connecting the PV system to the grid
Appointed LEW to submit Application Form to SP Services (SPS)
SP PowerGrid (SPPG) to evaluate and discuss with
LEW on the technical requirements, and on the technical
specifications of the PV system to be submitted
Comply with technical
requirements?
SPPG to advise connection scheme
LEW to install, test and commission PV system and
inform both SPPG and SPS
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
With the formation of the Clean Energy Programme Office, a whole of government
effort to develop capability in clean energy, the Building and Construction Authority
(BCA) took the initiative to prepare this document as a handbook to complement
EMAs Handbook for Photovoltaic Systems. As this is a relatively new area in Singapore,
the document will be updated as and when there is new development.
The aim of this guide is to share and provide the industry and homeowners the
procedures and the good practices in the design, planning and implementation of a
photovoltaic system in a building development.
This guide also provides examples of how photovoltaic (PV) are successfully integrated
into buildings overseas, illustrating how BIPV can both be an energy generator as
well as a versatile building material for the envelope.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
1 Introduction
1.1 Photovoltaic (PV in short) is a form of clean renewable energy. Most PV
modules use crystalline silicon solar cells, made of semiconductor
materials similar to those used in computer chips. Thin film modules use
other types of semiconductor materials to generate electricity. When
sunlight is absorbed by these materials, the semi-conductor material in
the PV cells is stimulated by the photons of the sunlight to generate direct
electrical current (DC). They will work as long as they are exposed to
daylight. The electricity generated is either used immediately or is stored
(eg. in batteries) for future use. Solar modules themselves do not store
electricity.
1.2 The objective of this handbook is to provide developers, architects, other
professionals as well as interested homeowners with some basic
information on how to approach, plan and implement a photovoltaic
system to generate electric power in a building development.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2 Design and Installation
2.1 Types of Photovoltaic System
Photovoltaic systems can be classified based on the end-use
application of the technology. There are two main types of PV
systems; grid-tie system and off-grid system.
Grid-Tie System
2.1.1 In a grid-tie system (Figure 1), the output of the PV systems is
connected in parallel with the utility power grid. In this way, the
power supply drawn from the utility grid will be correspondingly
reduced by the amount of power generated by the PV system. On
the other hand when there is little or no output from the PV
system due to cloudy weather or at night, the electricity drawn
from the utility grid will be correspondingly increased. Hence there
is no need to have storage batteries.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2 Design and Installation
2.1 Types of Photovoltaic System
Off-Grid System
2.1.2 In an off-grid system (Figure 2), batteries for energy storage are
required to provide electricity under conditions when there is little
or no output from the PV system. Currently, such PV systems are
already competitive in isolated sites where the electricity grid is far
away. Off-grid systems usually power DC loads, such as telecoms
systems, rural lighting systems, parking sign lights, lightings in
parks etc.
If required, off-grid systems can also include an inverter to drive
AC loads.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2 Design and Installation
2.2 EMAs requirements
Being electrical power systems, PV installations must meet
EMAs requirements. The Energy MarketAuthority
(EMA) has published on its website, a Handbook for
PV Systems to cover the electrical aspects of PV
systems. The Handbook provides information on the
licensing, market and technical requirements to ensure
safety, reliability and power quality of consumers
electrical installations and of the power grid.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2 Design and Installation
2.3 Where PVs can be installed in a building
There are many ways to install PV systems in a building. For existing buildings, the most common
manner without drastically affecting its appearance is to mount the PV modules on a frame on
the roof top. Typically, they are mounted above and parallel to the roof surface with a standoff of
several centimetres (recommended 10 cm) to reduce module temperature through air circulation.
Ideally, they should also be installed facing north-south orientation to maximise the amount of solar
energy received. Singapores proximity to the Equator means the modules compass orientation is
not critical. Laying the modules flat will maximise exposure to the sun. As flat-mounted modules may
get dirty from trapped rain water and dust, it is better to mount the modules at an angle (10-15 for
framed modules, or as little as 3-5 for unframed modules) to allow rain water
to run off properly.
The PV modules should be free of shade.
Shading of any cell of a module may reduce the output of the entire module drastically.
Therefore,shadows cast by tall trees and neighbouring buildings (including those to be built in future)
should be avoided.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
In a new development, besides mounting on the roof top,
the PV modules or panels could in a creative,
aesthetically-pleasing manner be integrated into the
building facade (this form of PV is commonly known
as Building Integrated Photovoltaic or BIPV in short).
This could be on any part of the roof or external walls
that is well-exposed to sunlight e.g. skylights, claddings,
windows, external shading devices. It could also
be integrated into external structures such as canopies, car
park shelters and railings.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.4 URAs requirements on development planning control
At present, there are no specifi c requirements or controls by URA
(Urban Redevelopment Authority)
on the use of materials such as PVs. However, conservation
projects or projects within the Central
Area are subject to URAs Urban Design evaluation process.
Guidelines on Conservation and Development Control
2.4.1 Architects are advised to refer to URAs guidelines on
conservation, urban design and development
control. The guidelines are available at the URA website.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.5 BCAs requirements on structural safety and lightning
protection
Structural Safety
2.5.1 For new building developments, the design for the structure
must take into consideration the loading of the PV installations,
just like any other equipment mounted on the building structure.
2.5.2 For existing buildings, the service of a professional
structural engineer may be required to carry out an inspection
of the roof structure and do a calculation on the structural loading.
This could be through the PV contractor (System integrator or
SI in short) or directly by the building owner. If the roof
is unable to withstand the loading of the PV system, there will be
a need for structural plans to be submitted to BCA for
approval. The application guideline is available at the following
BCA website:
http://www.bca.gov.sg/StructuralPlan/structural_plan_application.
html
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.5 BCAs requirements on structural safety and
lightning protection
Structural Safety
2.5.3 If BIPV glass is used as a glazing material and not as
an add-on to existing facade, it will be treated like any
other glazing material. No special approval for the use
of BIPV will be needed. If BIPV is installed on an
existing facade as an add-on, the design for the
mounting system must comply with building and
structural design code.
The structural loading requirement is as follows:
(a) For non-accessible roof, the loading must be below
0.5 kN/m2.
(b) For accessible roof, the loading must be below 1.25 kN/m2.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.5 BCAs requirements on structural safety and
lightning protection
Lightning Protection
2.5.4 Given its location, PV systems are likely to be hit when
lightning strikes in the vicinity. As lightning surges in the PV
system can cause damages to the PV modules and inverters,
care must be taken to ensure that proper lightning
protection is provided for the system and entire structure.
The inverters should be protected by appropriately rated surge
arrestors on the DC side. Structures and module frames must be
properly grounded.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.6 Guide For Owners - Installation Of Solar Panels or Photovoltaic
(PV)
Owner can check with URA directly whether PV can be
installed on the buildings facade/roof or Owner can also
approach a System Integrator (SI)* for such advice
Owner to appoint SI to take full responsibility of the work.
SI to engage professional engineer to assess the condition of building
structure and loading of PV.
Owner/SI to appoint a Licensed Electrical Worker (LEW)
to be responsible for the electrical works associated
with the PV system
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.6 Guide For Owners - Installation Of Solar Panels or Photovoltaic
(PV)
Appointed LEW to submit Application Form to SP Services(SPS)
SP PowerGrid (SPPG) to evaluate and discuss with LEW on
the technical requirements, and on the technical specifications of the
PV system to be submitted
SPPG to advise connection scheme
LEW to carry out or supervise the electrical works associated
with the PV System (including connection to the power
grid and/or electrical installation), and inform both
SPPG and SPS when completed.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.6 Guide For Owners - Installation Of Solar Panels or Photovoltaic
(PV)
SI:
i) should provide an operation and maintenance manual
including any authority approval (if applicable)
handover to homeowner
ii) should provide a warranty of 12 months of defects liability period
System Integrator (SI) in PV industry refers to a person or company
that provides design, supply, delivery,
installation, commissioning and maintenance of a photovoltaic power
system.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
1 Select a location, check with URA whether PV can be installed in
buildings facade/roof and set your budget
2 Determine energy requirement and estimate of system size
3 Site survey for space needed and access for maintenance
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
4 Engage a licensed electrical worker(LEW) if your proposed PV
system:
i) is to be connected to the electrical installation within your premises;
and/or
ii) is to be connected and operated in parallel to the power grid
The appointed LEW will be responsible for the design and
implementation of the connection of your PV system to the electrical
installation and/or power grid
5 Selection of module, type and mounting method
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
6 Inverter selection to match PV array
No. of inverters needed
Select inverter type
Location of inverters (accessible for inspection and maintenance)
7 Finalise the mounting system
8 Ensure there are fi xing and mounting points available
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
9 Ensure the structure for mounting is safe
Additional loading by PV system is considered
Wind loading is considered
Waterproofi ng is not compromised during installation
10 Solar access
Ensure location mounted will get maximum sunlight
Choose a location that is unshaded
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
11 Modules are installed at optimum orientation (North-south)
12 Modules are mounted at a tilt angle (10 to 15 degrees for framed
modules, or
as low as 3-5 for unframed laminates) for self-cleaning
13 Suffi cient ventilation space behind array for cooling purposes
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
14 Cables used must meet sufficient current-carrying capacity and are
suitably rated for the environment usage. DC cables must be single-
core, double-insulated. Cable insulation on outdoor cables must
withstand high temperatures and UV exposure for 20+ years. PVC
and XLPE cables are inadequate and must not be exposed to the
elements. (Cable design must comply with CP5)
15 Determine if lightning Protection System is needed (Design must
comply with CP16 and CP33)
16 Ensure that the PV module frame is earthed
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
17 Finalising the Inverter and AC wiring system
18 During installation
PV system should be installed by qualifi ed/experienced system
installers
safety rules must be observed, installer must wear PPE
only proper certifi ed safety equipment can be used e.g. scaffolding,
stepladders etc.
19 Cables must be properly connected, secured and routed
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
2.7 Design and Installation Checklists
20 Ensure continuity and insulation tests are done
21 Completion of testing & system commissioning
22 System, documentation/manual handover to owners
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
3 Operation & Maintenance
3.1 As there are usually no moving parts in PV installations, minimal
maintenance is needed. However,
routine maintenance is required to ensure that the system is performing
properly. It is a good
practice for PV contractor (or System Integrator) to provide an
Operation & Maintenance manual
to the owner. The manual should include basic system data, test &
commissioning data, O&M data
and warranty information.
3.2 The PV modules require routine visual inspection for signs of
damage, dirt build-up or shade
encroachment. Although it is usually designed and installed to be self-
cleaning through rainwater,
the modules should be hosed down if there is a build-up of dust. It is not
uncommon for PV
performance to improve slightly the next day after rain.
3.3 Periodically, system fixtures must be checked for corrosion. This is
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
3 Operation & Maintenance
3.1 As there are usually no moving parts in PV installations, minimal
maintenance is needed. However, routine maintenance is required to
ensure that the system is performing properly. It is a good practice for
PV contractor (or System Integrator) to provide an Operation &
aintenance manual to the owner. The manual should include basic
system data, test & commissioning data, O&M data and warranty
information.
3.2 The PV modules require routine visual inspection for signs of
damage, dirt build-up or shade encroachment. Although it is usually
designed and installed to be self-cleaning through rainwater,
the modules should be hosed down if there is a build-up of dust. It is not
uncommon for PV performance to improve slightly the next day after
rain.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
3 Operation & Maintenance
3.3 Periodically, system fixtures must be checked for corrosion. This is
to ensure the PV system is safely secured.
3.4 Any PV system connected to the electrical installation of a building,
is considered part of the electrical installation. The licensed electrical
worker (LEW) appointed by the building owner is responsible for
maintaining the electrical installation to ensure electrical safety.
Recommended Preventive Maintenance Works for Photovoltaic
System
3.5 Preventive maintenance works should be carried out every six (6)
months.
3.6 The following table indicates the components/equipments and the
corresponding remedial actions to be carried out during the preventive
maintenance works.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
Recommended Preventive Maintenance Works for Photovoltaic
System
1.PhotovoltaicModules
1. Dust/debris on surface.
2. Ensure no physical damage on surface.
3. Check for loose wire connection.
4. Check for wiring conditions.
Remedy/Action
1. Wipe clean. Do not use any solvents other than water!
2. Recommend replacement.
3. Retighten connection.
4. Replace wiring when necessary.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
Recommended Preventive Maintenance Works for Photovoltaic
System
2. Inverter
1. Check functionality.
2. Check for loose wiring connection.
3. Check for abnormal operating temperature.
Remedy/Action
1. Recommend replacement.
2. Retighten connection.
3. Recommended replacement.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
Recommended Preventive Maintenance Works for Photovoltaic
System
3. Lightning / Surge Voltage Protection
1. Check for loose wiring connection.
2. Check for all wiring conditions.
3. Check fuses, blocking diodes, circuit breakers, surge arrestors.
4. Check functionality.
Remedy/Action
1. Retighten connection.
2. Replace wiring when necessary.
3. Replace when necessary. Ensure to use dc-rated components on the
dc side!
4. Replace when necessary.
GREEN handbook-photovoltaic (PV) systems in buildings
-1H 2008, BCA (available from BCAs web)
Recommended Preventive Maintenance Works for Photovoltaic
System
Remedy/Action
4. Cabling / Junction Box
1. Visually check for wear and tear.
2. Check for loose connections.
Remedy/Action
1. Replace when necessary.
2. Retighten connection.
LOCAL CODE OF PRACTICE
ON PHOTOVOLTAIC
INSTALLATION
Singapore Standard SS CP 5:
1998
Amendment No. 1
CODE OF PRACTICE FOR
ELECTRICAL INSTALLATIONS
Singapore Standard SS CP 5:
1998
Amendment No. 1
Page 3, Contents
a) Add new Section 612 under Part 6
Special installation or locations
Section 612 Solar photovoltaic (PV)
power supply systems
b) Add new Appendix 7 Harmonized cable
core colours under Appendices.
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
a) Amend the introduction of Definitions as
follows:
For the purpose of this part of section, the
following definitions shall apply. As far as
practicable the definitions align with the
International Electrotechnical Vocabulary IEC
60050(826) and BS 4727 Glossary of
electrotechnical, power, telecommunication,
electronics, lighting and colour terms.
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
b) Amend definition of Neutral conductor
(page 19) as follows:
Neutral conductor. A conductor connected to
the neutral point of a system and contributing
to the transmission of electrical energy. The
term also means the equivalent conductor of
a d.c. system unless otherwise specified in
the Code and also identifies either the mid-
wire of a three-wire d.c. circuit or the earthed
conductor of a two-wire earthed d.c. circuit.
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
c) Add the following definitions
PV cell
Basic PV device which can generate
electricity when exposed to light such as solar
radiation
PV module
Smallest completely environmentally
protected assembly of interconnected PV cells
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV string
Circuit in which PV modules are connected in
series, in order for a PV array to generate the
required output voltage
PV array
Mechanically and electrically integrated
assembly of PV modules, and other
necessary components, to form a DC power
supply unit
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV array junction box
Enclosure where all PV strings of any PV
array are electrically connected and where
devices can be located
PV generator
Assembly of PV arrays
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV generator junction box
Enclosure where all PV arrays are electrically
connected and where devices can be located
if necessary
PV string cable
Cable connecting PV modules to form a PV
string
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV array cable
Output cable of a PV array
PV d.c. main cable
Cable connecting the PV generator junction
box to the d.c. terminals of the PV invertor
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV invertor
Device which converts d.c. voltage and d.c.
current into a.c. voltage and a.c. current
PV supply cable
Cable connecting the a.c. terminals of the PV
invertor to a distribution circuit of the electrical
installation
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
PV a.c. module
Integrated module / invertor assembly where
the electrical interface terminals are a.c. only.
No access is provided to the d.c. side
PV installation
Erected equipment of a PV power supply
system
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
Standard test conditions (STC)
Test conditions specified in IEC 60904-3 for
PV cells and PV modules
Open-circuit voltage under standard test
conditions UOC STC
Voltage under standard test conditions across
an unloaded (open) generator or on the d.c.
side of the invertor
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
Short-circuit current under standard test
conditions lSC STC
Short-circuit current of a PV module, PV string,
PV array or PV generator under standard test
conditions
d.c. side
Part of a PV installation from a PV cell to the
d.c terminals of the PV invertor
Page 13, Part 2 Definitions
a.c. side
Part of a PV installation from the a.c.
terminals of the PV invertor to the point of
connection of the PV supply cable to the
electrical installation
Simple separation
Separation between circuits or between a
circuit and earth by means of basic insulation
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.1 Scope
The particular requirements of this section apply to the
electrical installations of PV power supply systems
including systems with a.c. modules.
NOTE 1 Requirements for PV power supply systems
which are intended for stand-alone operation are under
consideration.
NOTE 2 (See also Figures 612.1 and 612.2).
612.3 Assessment of general
characteristics
612.31 Purpose, supplies and structure
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.312 Types of distribution systems
612.312.2 Types of system earthing
Earthing of one of the live conductors of the d.c side is
permitted, if there is at least simple separation between
the a.c side and the d.c side.
NOTE Any connections with earth on the d.c. side
should be electrically connected so as to avoid
corrosion.
612.4 Protection for safety
612.41 Protection against electric shock
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.410.3 General requirements
PV equipment on the d.c side shall be considered to be
energized, even when the system is disconnected from
the a.c side.
612.410.3.6
The protective measures of non-conduction locations
(Clause 413-04) and earth-free local equipotential
bonding (Clause 413-05) are not permitted on the d.c
side.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.411 Protection measure:
Automatic disconnection of supply
NOTE Protection by automatic disconnection of
supply on the d.c. side requires special measures which
are under consideration.
612.411.3.2.1.1
On the a.c side, the PV supply cable shall be connected
to the supply side of the protective device for automatic
disconnection of circuits supplying current-using
equipment.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.411.3.2.1.2
Where an electrical installation includes a PV power
supply system without at least simple separation
between the a.c side and the d.c side, an RCD installed
to provide fault protection by automatic disconnection of
supply shall be type B according to IEC 60755,
amendment 2.
Where the PV invertor by construction is not able to
feed d.c fault currents into the electrical installation, an
RCD of type B according to IEC 60755 amendment 2 is
not required.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.412 Protection measure: Double or
reinforced insulation
Protection of class II or equivalent insulation shall
preferably be adopted on the d.c. side.
612.414 Protection Measure: Extra-low
voltage provided SELV or PELV
612.414.1 General
612.414.1.1
For SELV and PELV systems, Uoc STC replaces Uo
and shall not exceed 120 V d.c
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.433 Protection against overload on the
d.c side
612.433.1
Overload protection may be omitted to PV string and PV
array cables when the continuous current-carrying
capacity of the cable is equal to or greater than 1,25
times ISC STC at any location.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.433.2
Overload protection may be omitted to the PV main
cable if the continuous currentcarrying capacity is
equal to or greater than 1,25 times ISC STC of the PV
generator.
NOTE The requirements of 612.433.1 and 612.433.2
are only relevant for protection of the cables. See as
well the manufacturer's instructions for protection of PV
modules.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.434 Protection against fault currents
612.434.1
The PV supply cable on the a.c side shall be protected
against fault current by an overcurrent protective device
installed at the connection to the a.c mains.
612.444 Protection against electromagnetic
interference (EMI) in buildings
612.444.4.4
To minimize voltages induced by lightning, the area of
all wiring loops shall be as small as possible.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.5 Selection and erection of electrical
equipment
612.51 Common rules
612.511 Compliance with standards
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.511.1
PV modules shall comply with the requirements of the
relevant equipment standard, e.g. IEC 61215 for
crystalline PV modules. PV modules of class II
construction or with equivalent insulation are
recommended if UOC STC of the PV strings exceeds
120 V d.c.
The PV array junction box, PV generator junction box
and switchgear assemblies shall be in compliance with
IEC 60439-1.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.512 Operational conditions and external
influences
612.512.1.1
Electrical equipment on the d.c side shall be suitable for
direct voltage and direct current.
PV modules may be connected in series up to the
maximum allowed operating voltage of the PV modules
and (UOC STC of the PV strings) and the PV invertor,
whichever is lower. Specifications for this equipment
shall be obtained from the equipment manufacturer.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.512.1.1 (contd)
If blocking diodes are used, their reverse voltage shall
be rated for 2 x UOC STC of the PV string. The blocking
diodes shall be connected in series with the PV strings.
612.512.2.1
As specified by the manufacturer, the PV modules shall
be installed in such a way that there is adequate heat
dissipation under conditions of maximum solar radiation
for the site.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.513 Accessibility
612.513.1
The selection and erection of equipment shall facilitate
safe maintenance and shall not adversely affect
provisions made by the manufacturer of the PV
equipment to enable maintenance or service work to be
carried out safely.
612.52 Selection and erection of wiring
systems
612.522 Selection and erection in relation to
external influences
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.522.8.1
PV string cables, PV array cables and PV DC main
cables shall be selected and erected so as to minimize
the risk of earth faults and short-circuits.
NOTE This may be achieved for example by
reinforcing the protection of the wiring against external
influences by the use of single-core sheathed cables.
612.522.8.3
Wiring systems shall withstand the expected external
influences such as wind, ice formation, temperature and
solar radiation.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.53 Isolation, switching and control
612.537 Isolation and switching
612.537.2 Isolation
612.537.2.1.1
To allow maintenance of the PV invertor, means of
isolating the PV invertor from the DC side and the AC
side shall be provided.
NOTE Further requirements with regard to the
isolation of a PV installation operating in parallel with
the public supply system are given in Clause 612.55
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.537.2.2 Devices for isolation
612.537.2.2.1
In the selection and erection of devices for isolation and
switching to be installed between the PV installation and
the public supply, the public supply shall be considered
the source and the PV installation shall be considered
the load.
612.537.2.2.5
A switch disconnector shall be provided on the DC side
of the PV invertor.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.537.2.2.5.1
All junction boxes (PV generator and PV array boxes)
shall carry a warning label indicating that active parts
inside the boxes may still be live after isolation from the
PV invertor.
612.54 Earthing arrangements, protective
conductors and protective bonding
conductors
Where protective equipotential bonding conductors are
installed, they shall be parallel to and in close contact
as possible with DC cables and AC cables and
accessories.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.55 Additional requirements for PV
installations operating in parallel
with public supply system
612.55.1
Care shall be taken to avoid adverse effects to the
public supply system and to other installations in
respect of power factor, voltage changes, harmonic
distortion, unbalance, starting, synchronizing or voltage
fluctuation effects. The owner of public supply system
shall be consulted in respect of particular requirements.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.55.2
Protection shall be provided to automatically disconnect
the PV power supply system from the public supply
system in the event of loss of that supply or deviation of
the voltage or frequency at the supply terminals from
values declared for normal supply.
612.55.3
Means shall be provided to prevent the connection of a
PV power supply system to the public supply system if
the voltage and frequency of the public supply system
are outside the limits of operation of the protection
required by Clause 612.55.2.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
612.55.4
Means shall be provided to enable the PV power supply
system to be isolated from the public supply system.
Warning notices for dual supply source shall be affixed
at the following locations in the installation
i) At the origin of the installation;
ii) At the meter position, if remote from the origin;
iii) At the consumer unit or distribution board to which
the PV power supply system is connected
iv) At all points of isolation of both sources of supply
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
The warning notice shall have the following wording:
WARNING DUAL SUPPLY
Isolate both mains and on-site PV power supply system
before carrying out work.
Isolate the mains supply at .
Isolate the PV power supply system at
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
Page 179, Appendix 1(L)
Amend the relevant references in Appendix 1(L) as
follows:
a) Delete the follow standards:
BS 1710 : 1984
(1991)
Specification for
identification of
pipelines and
services.
514-02-01
IEC 73: 1991 Coding of indicating
devices and
actuators by colours
and supplementary
means.
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
Page 179, Appendix 1(L)
b) Amend the following references:
BS 3858 : 1992 Specification for
binding and
identification
sleeves for use on
electric cables and
wires
514-03-02
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
Page 179, Appendix 1(L)
c) Add the following references:
IEC 60050(826) :
1982
International
Electrotechnical
Vocabulary (IEV)
Chapter 826 : Electrical
installations of buildings
Part 2
Definitions
IEC 60439-1 : 2004 Low-voltage switchgear
and controlgear
assemblies Part 1:
Type-tested and partially
type-tested assemblies
612.511.1
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
Page 179, Appendix 1(L)
c) Add the following references:
lEC/TR 60755 General requirements for
residual current operated
protective devices
Amendment 2 (1992)
612.411.3.2.1.2
IEC 60904-3: 1989 Photovoltaic devices
Part 3 : Measurement
principles for terrestrial
photovoltaic (PV) solar
devices with reference
spectral irradiance data
Part 2
Definitions
SECTION 612(L)
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) POWER
SUPPLY SYSTEMS
Page 179, Appendix 1(L)
c) Add the following references:
IEC 61215: 2005 Crystalline silicon
terrestrial photovoltaic
(PV) modules Design
qualification and type
approval
612.511.1