Main author

BRE Group Researcher Website
Last edited 21 Jul 2016

Code of practice for grid connected solar photovoltaic systems

The Code of Practice for Grid Connected Solar Photovoltaic Systems was published in 2014 by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). It was written by IET Standards with expert technical input from the BRE National Solar Centre.

The IET is one of the world’s largest engineering institutions with nearly 160,000 members in 127 countries, covering; energy, transport, manufacturing, information and communications, and the built environment. The BRE National Solar Centre (NSC) was established in 2012 to provide independent evidence-based information about solar energy systems and related topics.

The Code of Practice (CoP) gives designers and installers of solar photovoltaic (PV) system the knowledge they need to ensure that their systems comply with UK and international standards and good practice. It is suitable for all scales of installation, from small domestic systems to large scale PV farms. As well as industry practitioners, the CoP will be of interest to customers, owners, investors, insurers and financiers of solar PV systems.

The CoP updates UK industry practice to ensure installation of grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) systems in the UK is safe, effective and fit-for-purpose. In the latest edition, system earthing, fault alarms, fusing, connectors and fire detection have been reviewed in detail, with key changes made to support good practice in the UK and to align with international standards.

The CoP covers:

  • All parts of a grid-connected solar PV system up to and including the connection to the AC mains.
  • Low voltage and high voltage connections and components.
  • Building-mounted, building-integrated and ground-mounted systems.
  • Grid-connected systems with battery storage.

Jonny Williams, Director of the BRE National Solar Centre said, “The Code of Practice raises the bar for quality in the UK solar PV industry… Its publication follows extensive industry consultation and peer review – receiving more than 400 comments – resulting in guidance that is both technically robust and readily useable by everyone involved. With the solar industry making an important and growing contribution to cost-effective low-carbon electricity provision in the UK, it is crucial that all systems are designed, installed and maintained to a high quality standard – the new CoP will be a valuable tool in achieving that goal.”

Martin Cotterell, BRE National Solar Centre Associate, and expert technical author for the CoP said, “The Code of Practice represents an evolution of existing technical standards. The scope is much broader, with a lot more technical details and a number of advances based on lessons learnt by the industry over the last five years of rapid solar PV development.”

--BRE_Group

[edit] Find out more

[edit] Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki