The robotic cleaning solution is the first and only system verified for long-term use on nine major solar panel brands
Ecoppia, an innovative developer of automated, water-free photovoltaic (PV) solar panel cleaning solutions, announced today that Photovoltaik Institut Berlin (PI Berlin), one of the world's most respected independent PV technology testing laboratories, has certified the company's E4 robotic cleaning system as safe for long-term use on solar panels manufactured by nine global market leaders: Yingli Solar, First Solar, Solar Frontier, Photowatt, JA Solar, Trina Solar, Canadian Solar, Jinko Solar, and ReneSola. Ecoppia E4 is the only solar panel cleaning solution on the market to receive such certification.
"We are proud to be the first and only solar panel cleaning solution certified by a top-tier photovoltaic institute like PI Berlin," said Eran Meller, CEO of Ecoppia. "This strong statement proves once again that Ecoppia's patented technology is ideally suited to meet the varying demands of geographies around the world, and provides a cleaning solution that is both effective and completely safe for use over the lifetime of an installation."
The accumulation of dirt and dust on PV solar panels is one of the greatest impediments to utility-scale solar energy production, and can reduce output by up to 35 percent. Ecoppia E4 cleaning robots use a soft microfiber and air flow cleaning system to remove 99 percent of solar panel dust daily and cost-effectively maintain optimal production levels year-round. The self-charging, self-cleaning units are automatically driven by sensors along each row of an installation, and the system's robust controls enable remote programming, management and monitoring.
Using sand from two separate Middle Eastern deserts, PI Berlin conducted rigorous stress tests and destruction analyses on the E4 system, simulating 20 years of daily cleaning. Tests were performed both on site and in PI Berlin's laboratory in Germany. For its sandstorm simulation, PI Berlin used more than 2.5 grams of sand spread across each module in a frequency that corresponded to 45 dust storms per year, or a total of 900 dust storms. For all panels tested, PI Berlin found that the Ecoppia solution caused no micro cracks or power degradation whatsoever.
As a result of the PI Berlin testing results, two major solar panel providers have already supplied written certification for the installation of Ecoppia's technology on their panels around the world. Additional vendor certifications are underway, and PI Berlin will continue to test E4 to ensure the system's suitability for panels from other major vendors.