World's Largest Photovoltaic Testing Center Selected to Help Share Sandia's Testing Model

NEWTOWN, CT/July 21, 2009 - TÜV Rheinland PTL, LLC, the world's largest solar and photovoltaic testing service, won a two-phase, 16-month photovoltaic module testing and analysis contract with the world-renowned Sandia National Laboratories. Through the contract, TÜV Rheinland PTL becomes an industry partner, learning and sharing Sandia's method for photovoltaic testing and analysis.

TÜV Rheinland is the leading test organization for photovoltaic (PV) technology worldwide, providing testing for more than 60% of the PV technology on the market today.

"Our personnel have an extraordinary depth of knowledge and experience in the photovoltaic arena. TÜV Rheinland PTL has performed projects similar to those outlined in Sandia's proposal," said Dr. Govindasamy Tamizhmani, President of TÜV Rheinland PTL. "Fortunately, the lab's location in Tempe, Arizona - where there are more than 300 clear sunny days per year - allows us the flexibility to provide photovoltaic testing year round."

Sandia is one of two U.S. Department of Energy labs involved in PV research and development. Over an 11-year period, Sandia developed a test method called the Sandia Photovoltaic Array Performance Model. Because of its high level of accuracy and quality, the Sandia model is sought after by PV manufacturers and system integrators alike.

The contract provides Sandia a third-party, commercial resource to carry out its proprietary PV testing method. Once trained in this method, TÜV Rheinland PTL will provide extensive commercial testing services using the Sandia method and maintain a Web-based public database from which the industry will benefit.

The Sandia contract will be implemented in two phases. In Phase 1, TÜV Rheinland PTL will develop and improve PV module testing and analysis capabilities according to the Sandia Photovoltaic Array Performance Model. This will involve a build-up of its hardware and software, employee training, and documentation of quality standards. Phase 2 will include a test and analysis of commercially available modules according to the Sandia model and a standardized report on each for entry into a database.

The contract is currently scheduled to run through September 2010.

About Sandia National Laboratories
Sandia is a multiprogram laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a Lockheed Martin company, for the U.S. Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration. With main facilities in Albuquerque, N.M., and Livermore, Calif., Sandia has major R&D responsibilities in national security, energy and environmental technologies, and economic competitiveness.

About TÜV Rheinland PTL, LLC
Based in Tempe, Arizona, TÜV Rheinland PTL, LLC is a leading provider of safety and performance testing, and market certification serving every sector of the photovoltaic marketplace, from the supply chain through installation. TÜV Rheinland PTL is a unique partnership between Arizona State University, an institution with more than 50 years of research on solar energy and extensive solar testing know-how, and TÜVRheinland®, a $1.5 billion global provider of independent testing, assessment, and certification services. With an international network across six continents, TÜVRheinland® maintains the largest network of Solar Energy Laboratories worldwide, with five major laboratories on three continents. For more information, visit

About TÜVRheinland®
TÜVRheinland® delivers premier independent testing, assessment, and certification services to help companies gain access into global markets. Boasting an international network across six continents, the company's in-country experts ease the path to compliance with cost-effective pricing and quick turnaround times. The $1.5 billion corporation is comprised of an international network of more than 13,300 employees in 61 countries and serves most industry sectors and markets worldwide. For more information, visit

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