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Photovoltaic Training Course

Description
Where:
Duration:
Fee:
Manual:
Enrollment:

The Living City Campus at Kortright, Vaughan, ON


5-Day Training Course*
$1600 (includes manual and lunch daily)
Photovoltaic Systems, Revision 10.4
Limited to 16 participants

*Note:

Customized courses are available.

Contact Svend De bruyn (sde bruyn@trca.on.ca) for further information.

To meet the growing demand for trained installers and educators, The Living City
Campus at Kortright has developed a five-day, Photovoltaic Training Course that
includes background theory, hands-on demonstrations, installation components,
and fall arrest training. Completion of the course prepares participants to write
the NABCEP (North American Board Certified of Energy Practitioners) entry level
certification exam which will allow them to enter into the growing solar energy
marketplace.
The Living City Campus at Kortright is home to the largest demonstration of
operating PV systems in Canada. From 100 watts to 90 kilowatts, the campus
showcases both off-grid and grid tied systems as well as demonstrating various
types of mounting installations including, sloped roof, flat roof and integrated
systems. The course is held in the Campus off-grid cottage: an ideal setting to
inspire participants about the potential of renewable energy. Staff instructors
have over 75 years combined experience in teaching and installing solar and wind
energy systems.
Instructors:

Svend de Bruyn

Photovoltaic Training Course


Outline

Day 1
1. Photovoltaic Introduction
a) What are Photovoltaic's
b) Applications
c) Industry and Markets Trends
2. Electrical and Solar Fundamentals
a) Energy/work/power, Electrical Terminology, Units of Measurement, Circuits
b) Solar Radiation and Measuring Tools
3. Photovoltaic Fundamentals
a)
b)
c)
d)

Cells, Modules, Arrays


Efficiency
PV cell types
Module Specification
open circuit voltage
short circuit current
I - V curves

e) Factors Affecting Performance


4. PV system Tour
Tour of various PV systems
5. Field Work
a) Measuring module specifications
b) Testing factors affecting modules
c) Series and parallel connections

Photovoltaic Training Courses (outline cont.)


Day 2
1. Site Assessment and Planning
a) Survey and Site Assessment Criteria
b) Assessment tools
2. Mounting Systems
a)
b)
c)
d)
e)

Roof, Ground, Ballasted, pole, tracker, Building Integrated (BIPV)


Roof mount systems and considerations
Module and Array orientation
Racking types
Safety

3. Mechanical Integration

4. Field Work
a) Site Assessment tools
b) Component connections

Day 3
1. System Components and Configurations
a)
b)
c)
d)
e)
f)

Charge controllers
Combiner boxes
Inverters
Wiring
Batteries
Grounding

2. Electrical Integration

3. Lab Work
a) Table top assembles for off grid

Photovoltaic Training Courses (outline cont.)


Day 4
Field Work
1. Installation Practices
2. Installation of Grid Tie System

Day 5
1.
2.
3.
4.

System Design and Sizing


Building Integration
Code, Regulations and Safety
Permitting and Inspection
a. Net metering
b. FIT
c. Micro Fit
5. Test

Photovoltaic Training Course


Modules and Learning Outcomes
Course Modules:
Module 1

Introduction to Photovoltaics

Module 2

Electrical Power and Energy

Module 3

Solar Fundamentals

Module 4

PV Fundamentals

Module 5

Solar Site Assessment

Module 6

System Sizing

Module 7

Installation and Mounting Systems

Module 8

System Components and Configurations

Module 9

Net Metering, Fit and MicroFit

Module 1Introduction to Photovoltaics


Topics Covered
Best Practices
Advantages and Disadvantages of Renewable Energy
Energy Consumption Practices Global and Personal Perspectives
Conservation and Energy Efficiency
Historical Timeline of Electricity and Development of PV Technology
PV System Types and Industry Terminology/Definitions
Learning Objectives
Participants will receive an overview of the benefits and limitations of PV
technology allowing them to understand the rationale for the use of PV,
while at the same time making them aware of the factors that may limit the
use of the technology in certain applications
Participants will be introduced to energy consumption trends, both globally
and personally to provide a general understanding of how energy is
consumed
Participants will be introduced to the concept of energy conservation as an
important first step to be considered before the consideration for
renewable energy
Participants will be introduced to the various type of PV systems including
Direct Coupled, Self Regulating, Bimodal, Grid-Tied and Off-Grid
Participants will be introduced to definitions and terminology used
throughout the industry
Participants will receive a brief history lesson on the development of
electricity leading up to and including the invention of PV technology

Module 2

Electrical Power and Energy

Topics Covered

Voltage, Current, Resistance, Voltage Drop, Power and Energy


Application of the Power Formula
Direct and Alternating Current
Series and Parallel Circuits
PV Components (Cell, Module, Array)
Series and Parallel Circuits Applied to PV Modules and Arrays
Module Life
PV Market Trends

Learning Objectives
Participants will learn the fundamental basics of electrical theory including
the concepts of voltage, current, resistance and voltage drop
Participants will learn how the basics, described above, are then applied to
the concepts of electrical power and energy and ultimately the application
of these components in the power formula
Participants will learn the differences between Direct and Alternating
Current
Participants will learn about series and parallel circuits and their application
to PV technology
Participants will learn about the performance reliability of modules
Participants will learn about market trends (economic and production)
affecting the PV industry

Module 3

Solar Fundamentals

Topics Covered

Solar Irradiance and Irradiation


Electromagnetic Spectrum
Atmospheric Effects
Tools for Measuring Irradiance
Solar Energy Concepts
Peak Sun Hours
Insolation Maps
Solar Spectrum

Learning Objectives
Participants will learn about the concept of solar irradiance and how levels
of irradiance increase and decrease throughout the course of a day
Participants will learn about the types of solar radiation and potential
atmospheric effects
Participants will be introduced to various devices used to measure
irradiance including pyranometers, portable pyranometers, pyrheliometer,
and reference cells
Participants will learn about solar energy concepts including an overview of
peak sun hours as a measure of total daily solar irradiance and the use of
insolation maps to illustrate global peak sun hours

Module 4

PV Fundamentals

Topics Covered

Definition of Photovoltaics
PV Cells and Types of Cells
PV Manufacturing
PV Modules
Measuring Open Circuit Voltage, Short Circuit Current and Measuring
Devices
The I-V Curve, or Electrical Output Profile
Module Evaluation
Module Specifications
PV Performance Rating Conditions
Factors Affecting PV Performance

Learning Objectives
Participants will learn how PV cells convert photons from sunlight into
electricity
Participants will learn about the types of silicon PV cells including
amorphous, multicrystalline and monocrystalline as well as other
specialized PV types including concentrated PV, bifacial and cylindrical
Participants will be introduced to the various stages of the manufacturing
process for PV modules and the use of sun simulators to undertake flash
testing of completed modules
Participants will learn how modules are evaluated under standard test
conditions (STC) and PV test conditions (PTC) and how the development of
I-V curves is used to illustrate the electrical output profile of a PV module
under specific operating conditions
Participants will learn how factors such as temperature, light intensity,
array orientation, tilt angle and shading can affect the performance output
of the PV system

Module 5

Solar Site Assessment

Topics Covered

Physical Site Assessment Considerations


Measuring Roof Orientation
Measuring Altitude Angle and Available Tools
Site Assessment Tools
Module Warranties
Case Study: Evaluation of a Site to Compare Predicted Output and Return
on Investment

Learning Objectives
Participants will learn the about the key objectives of undertaking a solar
site assessment and will learn about the rationale for why a good
assessment is critical to optimizing performance of a PV system
Participants will learn about measuring roof angles and making corrections
for magnetic declination
Participants will learn about altitude angle and its importance to a site
assessment and what tools can be used to measure altitude angle including
an inclinometer and Theodolite, an i Phone application.
Participants will be introduced to the various tools available for undertaking
solar site assessments including Solar Pathfinder, Solmetric Sun Eye and
Solmetric IPV i Phone application
Participants will learn about the operational characteristics of each tool,
and how they are used to identify potential shading sources and how they
calculate total annual sun hours for a particular site
Participants will walk through the input parameters for the various tools
and will learn how to read and interpret site reports generated by the tools
Participants will learn about the advantages and disadvantages of the
various tools as well as gain an understanding of the capital and operating
costs associated for each tool
Participants will learn how to interpret module warranty information, in
particular understanding power warranty information

Participants will understand how to accurately calculate derating factors for


a PV system and will learn, through a case study example, how erroneous
derating factors can be used to inflate performance predictions

Module 6

System Sizing

Topics Covered

Considerations for Off-Grid Systems


Considerations for Grid-Tied Systems
Determining System Loads
Concepts of Energy Neutral and Financial Neutral

Learning Objectives
Participants will understand the different objectives to consider when sizing
for an off-grid system versus a grid-tied system
Participants will learn about the concept of net-metering
Participants will learn how to calculate system loads and to understand
how load requirements change throughout the year in order to determine
which timeframe is critical for sizing calculations
Participants will discuss the various motivating factors to consider when
sizing a PV system including, Energy Neutrality, Financial Neutrality, Budget
Restrictions and Revenue Generation (Fit/Micro-Fit)

Module 7

Installation and Mounting Systems

Topics Covered

Pre-Assembly
Installation Considerations
Health and Safety Considerations
Mounting System Types
Mounting Considerations
Module Location and Orientation
Racking Components
Grounding

Learning Objectives
Participants will learn about a number of factors that can impact
installation of PV systems including factors that can improve the process of
installation, like pre-assembly, and other logistical and physical site factors
that may make installations more challenging including, weather, roof
condition, roof structure, existing electrical service, accessibility and
equipment requirements
Participants will learn about the various safety concerns associated with PV
installation including, Personal Protective Equipment, Lock-Out and Tag-Out
procedures
Participants will review statistics from electrical accidents to emphasize the
importance of working safely and will learn about metering devices that are
available to facilitate trouble shooting and installation procedures
Participants will participate in a 3-hour Fall Arrest Training component for
which they will receive certification
Participants will learn about the pros and cons of the various mounting
types including, pole mounted, tracker mounted, roof mounted, ballasted
roof mounted and ground mounted

Participants will learn about various factors to consider when determining


mounting options including, wind load, spacing, service access, structural
load, aesthetics, snow accumulation and mechanical integration
Participants will learn about the importance of

Module 8

System Components and Configurations

Topics Covered
Inverter Types, Specifications and Sizing Programs
Electrical Safety Considerations and Protective Mechanisms within
Inverters
Data Logging
Wiring and Meter Installation
Array Combiners
Off-Grid System Components
Batteries
Learning Objectives
Participants will learn about the function of inverters in a PV system and
also about the various types of inverters including, grid-tied string inverters,
grid-tied micro inverters and off-grid inverters
Participants will learn about built-in safety features in inverters designed to
prevent anti-islanding
Participants will learn how to read and interpret specifications data
Participants will discuss potential electrical hazards and safety precautions
to consider when connecting inverters and other components of a PV
system
Participants will learn about data logging capabilities and the benefits of
tracking PV output
Participants will learn about AC and DC wiring and meter installation
requirements for PV systems

Participants will learn about the function, components and wiring


requirements of combiner boxes
Participants will learn about the different component requirements in offgrid systems including back-up generators, battery banks and charge
controllers

Module 9

Green Energy Act, FIT and MicroFit

Topics Covered

Green Energy Act


Pricing Schedule for FIT
Standard Offer and FIT Program
Key FIT Definitions
Understanding MicroFIT
Domestic Content Requirements
Applications & Contracts
Metering Connection Options

Learning Objectives
Participants will be introduced to the Green Energy Act and the Feed-In
Tariff Program
Participants will learn about the various pricing rates available for wind and
PV systems of varying sizes
Participants will discuss key definitions that apply to the FIT program
Participants will learn about the current stipulations for Canadian content
Participants will walk through the application process, connection
agreements with local distribution companies, requirements from the
Electrical Safety Association and the OPA contract offer
Participants will learn about the options for meter connections including
indirectly connected in parallel, direct connection and transition from netmetering accounts