RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
Canadian Solar opened the state-of-the-art solar PV Research Center in Suzhou, China in 2009. The 1500 square meter (16,145 sf) facility is staffed by PhD scientists, engineers and technicians researching on the industry leading solar cell and solar module technologies. For years, solar industry has been looking for products with high efficiency and high reliability at grid parity price. With this mandate in mind, Canadian Solar R & D team has introduced several technology proven and commercially viable solar modules. In 2008, our team successfully developed a special technology to purify metallurgical silicon into solar grade silicon to combat the severe silicon supply shortage in the market then. In 2010, our R & D team developed a new type of MWT, ELPS cell with 19.6% cell efficiency, the highest efficiency among all P-type monosilicon cells. Through continuous improvement, ELPS cell has reached 21.4% efficiency. In 2013, our R & D team has developed 4 busbar solar cells, greatly improving the module efficiency and reliability, a big leap forward over all current front contact cells in today’s solar market. In 2013, our R & D team also brings to market the first module integrated micro-inverter AC solutions, fundamentally making solar system installations a plug & play practice.
Canadian Solar’s R & D team is staffed by over 400 scientists, engineers and technicians in Canada and China with over 170 world patent applications.
ISO17025 Qualified Testing Lab
Back in 2008, Canadian Solar commissioned the first manufacturer owned photovoltaic reliability testing laboratory according to ISO/IEC 17025 (Accreditation Criteria for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories). To safeguard the quality of all the materials used in our cell and module production, all BOMs have to go through a series of stringent qualification tests first according to its respective international quality and reliability standards.
Canadian Solar’s Photovoltaic Testing Lab has been designated as the witness testing lab for VDE and Intertec for various IEC61215 and IEC61730, UL1703, IEC61701, related testings, such as HChas been equipped with a damp heat chamber, thermal cycling chamber, UV chamber, hotspot test equipment, IR camera, salt spray chambers and water spray chambers. The following reliability tests may be conducted in our lab: thermal cycling, damp heat, UV, hotspot, mechanical load, I-V performance, outdoor exposure, dry & wet hi-pot, bypass diode thermal, humidity freeze and robustness of terminations.