Skip Navigation Links.

Search for publications:

Limit search to the fields

ECN publication
PV-prive project bij ECN;
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Energy in the Built Environment 1-10-2004
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-C--04-089 ECN publication
Number of pages: Full text:
106 Download PDF  


The ECN PV-Privé project has been set up in order to investigate the application of small-scale grid-connected PV-systems in the existing built environment.

Employees of ECN and NRG have got a possibility to purchase SunPower® PV-systems with an attractive financial regulation. In exchange for that offer, they co-operate in a monitoring project and report regularly yields of their PV-systems.

The ECN task within this project is the monitoring and dissemination of experience gained in the preparation period, during installation, follow-up care, maintenance and exploitation of PV-systems, as well as providing service to project participants. The monitoring of yields and quality of PV-systems has served as a basis for follow-up research projects.

Within the PV-Privé project, 48 employees of ECN or NRG had let a PV-system installed. After more than three and a half years, up to and including June 2004, this group has shrunk to 36 participants. This is due to the fact that a number of participants has left the company or sold their house together with the PV-system.

If a permit to place the PV-system is granted or not, depends strongly on the interpretation of the regulations and the Building Code by the given municipality authorities. Mostly, they draw a parallel with solar thermal collectors.

The Internet is used to disseminate information on the project to participants as well as to provide a possibility to report electricity yields, fill the questionnaires, etc.

During the whole duration of the project there has been a helpdesk available for the participants. They can ask for any information regarding the project and report the defects and failures. The service has been used rather intensively up till now.

The report focuses on various components of the SunPower® PV-system as well as on occurred failures and experience with the installation.

An important objective of the project has been monitoring and analysis of the yields. Monitoring will continue at least for a period of five years. For this purpose, ECN has developed its own monitoring software. This software has also been used within other projects.

The report treats the issue of compensation for the electricity supplied to the grid and the issue of electricity meters with registers turning backwards.

Within the period of four years, a lot valuable knowledge has been gathered. This has been reached through continuous monitoring of practical experience since the beginning of the project as well as gaining information on non-technical aspects and operation of PV-systems by means of a questionnaire. The helpdesk and the service that shall stay available for five years have certainly contributed to this. Looking at all this experience it is clear that the project may be evaluated as successful.

Back to List