Southeast Asia opened in Singapore early this month.
The VDE-Fraunhofer ISE Pte Ltd, a joint venture between VDE Institute and the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE), aims to provide highly sophisticated testing and certification services in the performance and safety of solar photovoltaic modules from the second half of 2009. Its presence will help support and service the photovoltaic industry in the region.

By conforming to IECEE standards — a worldwide system for conformity testing and certification of electric technical equipment and components — the new venture aims to set an important milestone in the development of the solar industry in the Asia Pacific region.

VDE-Fraunhofer ISE Pte Ltd will collaborate with the recently founded Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS), which has access to new research and development, and service facilities.

“We will make every effort to support the industry with consulting and by testing and certifying Asian-made technologies for the world market,” said Wilfried Jäger, chairman of the VDE Testing and Certification Institute. “Singapore is the ideal hub for the region’s solar industry, and Asia itself is on the way of becoming the hub of the global economy.”

Hans-Martin Henning, head of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE), said: “Asia is the place to be as much of the future is taking shape here. So we are here, ready to serve the solar industry throughout the region with our large common pool of expertise and experience.”

Economic Development Board (EDB) assistant managing director Manohar Khiatani said: “We are delighted that VDE and Fraunhofer ISE are setting up a testing and certification centre for solar photovoltaic modules in Singapore. This marks another milestone in our quest to be a global clean energy hub, adding vibrancy to our ecosystem here. This new venture will serve the needs of solar manufacturers in Asia and position Singapore as a regional hub for solar testing and certification services.”

The Fraunhofer ISE is one of the world’s leading institutes in development of solar energy technologies. The agency has many years of experience in the calibration of solar modules, for 15 years now the manufacturers of solar modules around the globe use the high precision measurements of the ISE CalLab.

The VDE Institute is a national and international accredited, independent institution which tests and certifies electrical appliances, components and systems with the highest quality standard for the safety of the consumer and the general public.

The two agencies are working to advance international testing standards and general
standards within the frame of the International Electro Technical Commission (Technical Committee 82, Working Group 2: Modules) and the DKE (German Commission for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies of DIN and VDE).

SERIS is Singapore’s national laboratory for solar energy research. It started operations on April 1 2008 and is located in the engineering faculty at the National University of Singapore (NUS).