SunSpec Alliance

SunSpec Alliance Newsletter          March 2011

SunSpec Welcomes Our Newest Members ~

SolarBridge Technology

TMEIC ~ Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Supply Corporation

Phoenix Contact
Continental Control Systems
Complete Member Roster




 This month's  Newsletter features:
  • Members Meeting 2/9/11 Highlights                 Presentations from 12 of our Members
  • News From the Field

           John Nunneley, Executive Director - Gives an Update              on SGIP

  • Upcoming Events
           SolarTech Solar Leadership Summit
  • News and Updates From Members:
          TUV Rheinland, Moxa, Zigbee Alliance, ARC Advisory
  • Profiles of Two of Our Newest Members:       Siemens and TMEIC, Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electrical Industrial Supply-Corporation.


State of the Market  -  highlights

Tom Tansy, Chairman, SunSpec Alliance


·Three continents drive market

    Europe dominates but growth slowing

    China poised to explode

    North America finding its way but lagging


· Utilities bracing for growth

    Concentration of PV Installations felt

    Information technology acknowledged as essential

    Leaders looking for answers


· Customers want solutions providing short path to revenue

    Modular integrated

    Easy to adopt/implement

    Reinforce investment decision


State of the Specs  - highlights

John Nunneley, Executive Director, SunSpec Alliance


· Complete devise definitions

     Module Tracker Controller


· Machine readable device profile

    Spreadsheet XML


· Standard Logger Reference

    Member reference implementations

    SunSpec developed


· SunSpec POST standard

    Logger to Datacenter



Download Meeting Presentation 

Member Presentations:  Thank you to all the participating members. To view each participating member update ~ contact for log in credentials.

Advanced Energy, ARC Advisory, CG Power Solutions U.S.A. Inc.   Digi International, Moxa, Noveda,  Power Dash,Power-One,  PPT Solar, Silver Spring Networks, SolarBridge Technologies SolarEdge, TUV Rheinland  

Testing and Certification - Rolf Bienert - TUV- Rhineland


Announcing SunSpec Customer Advisory Council

Stephen LaPointe, Vice Chairman, SunSpec Alliance


2011    Summary


· Market will be robust but not at 2010 levels


· Europe dominates but growth is elsewhere



    APAC and Americas


· Cost pressure is increasing

    BOS & non module costs are obvious targets


· Information on standards are key

    Major efficiency contributor

    Cost reduction agent

    Competitive enabler



Look for next members meeting in August 2011 



SGIP Update - John Nunneley, Executive Director
     As a member of the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) Governing Board representing the renewable energy industry, SunSpec Executive Director John Nunneley has broad purview over national efforts to create standards that will support a new generation of energy management and efficiency applications.

     The SGIP was created by the federal National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in November 2009 to help fulfill its obligations under the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007.  While the governing board oversees the activities of the panel, the real work occurs in the expert working groups and priority action plan (PAP) committees.  All standards must pass a stringent architectural and security review before being presented to the board for approval.         Approved standards are then added to the SGIP Catalog of Standards and are recommended for use in smart grid applications and deployments.  "The process the SGIP has created is every bit as important as the end result," commented Nunneley.  "We need openness, transparency, and broad participation across the spectrum of stakeholders to be successful."

     A great deal has been accomplished in the first 16 months of operations.  Several standards have been completed or are near completion and there have been many process kinks worked out so the work stream can flow smoothly.  The most important of these to date is the Energy Usage Information Model standard produced by NAESB after extensive review.  "You can't manage your energy and improve your efficiency without understanding your usage.  The EUI model is a "seed standard" in that it will be incorporated into a wide variety of applications," said Nunneley.

     Lack of standards has been holding the industry back on a variety of fronts.  "The most important thing right now is to complete the Smart Energy Profile (SEP) 2.0 work going on at the Zigbee Alliance," noted Nunneley.  SEP 1.0 was unacceptable to the standards community for many reasons.  But without 2.0, many pilots have rolled out, or are planning to rollout 1.0 based solutions.  This has created a growing migration problem as existing deployments will need to be upgraded, replaced, gateway-ed, or, in some cases, may become stranded.

SunSpec and Zigbee have a liaison relationship and, in partnership with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and smart grid technology startup Gridata, produced an inverter control and monitoring specification based on the SunSpec standard that will be incorporated into the SEP 2.0 standard.  "SEP 1.0 was lacking any support for distributed energy generation resources (DER/DG).  With SEP 2.0, the renewable industry will have a standard that supports both monitoring and control of DER/DG, based on international standards, that can run over existing wireless and wired networks," added Nunneley.
     There is still a huge amount of work to do.  "The Smart Grid rollout is going to follow a pattern similar to the Internet.  It will continue to evolve for many years and take us in directions that we have not yet imagined," asserted Nunneley.  Major challenges face the SGIP, not the least of which is its current dependency on NIST for funding.   Like the industry in general, the SGIP cannot count on ongoing subsidies that may disappear on the turn of politics and budget realities.  "We have to be able to stand on our own two feet if we are going to survive.  The adoption of standards by the industry will be a critical element to driving the costs of renewable energy down to the point where it can compete toe-to-toe with traditional energy sources," concluded Nunneley.

The SunSpec Alliance invites and calls on all members to join and participate in the SGIP process.  To learn more about the SGIP,
Full Report



SolarTech Solar Leadership Summit - March 29th & 30th 

Tom Tansy, Chairman, SunSpec Alliance - Featured Speaker

SunSpec Members enjoy registration discount through March 15th.

contact: for details

Registration and Information SolarTech Solar Leadership Summit


TUV Rhineland


Tempe, AZ and Boston, MA/ February 9, 2011 - TÜV Rheinland PTL, LLC, North America's largest solar and photovoltaic testing company, has received Keymark accreditation by DIN CERTCO to perform solar thermal collector testing and performance verification.  This accreditation allows manufacturers of solar collecting products to have their products third-party certified that they conform to European standards.  In addition TÜV Rheinland PTL performs similar services for access to North American markets under the SRCC testing and certification program.

Full Report





The World's Most Precise Timekeeping Computer

DA-683 x86-based Dual Core Atom D510 Rackmount Embedded Computer

Power Up With IEC 61850-3 and IEEE 1588


Taipei, Taiwan, December 28, 2010-Moxa is pleased to unveil the DA-683, a new x86-based embedded computer. The DA-683 excels in power automation and power substation applications thanks to IEC 61850-3, IEEE 1613, and IEEE 1588 support.


Reliable performance, low power consumption

Precision time protocol with IEEE 1588 certification

Reliable and stable operations with IEC 61850-3 certification

Modular design for system integration and flexibility

Moxa - Power UP   Full Report

For more information please visit the product page.



ZigBee Alliance


U.S. APPLIANCE MAKER ASSOCIATION CALLS ZIGBEE A PROVEN SMART GRID STANDOUT     The Association of Home Appliance Makers, whose members ship $30 billion in household appliances annually in the United States, named ZigBee one of three most suitable communication protocols for the development and implementation of the U.S. Smart Grid. 

Full Report



ZigBee was found to be the most cost-effective and energy-efficient HAN communications technology available, according to a December 2010 GE Appliance and Lighting. 

Full Report




ARC content is published by all leading publications around the world: Control, AutomationWorld, Supply Chain Brain, Hydrocarbon Processing, Search, Prime, Managing Automation, Plant releases relating to industrial automation and enterprise solutions on our web site.

Full Report


ARC Analyst authored reports and articles ARC Domain Specific Knowledge Centers! These Knowledge Centers make it easy for you to find content on our website. 

Full Report






Siemens is focusing on the two established technologies for the utilization of solar energy:

§   Both as a balance of plant provider of components and solutions and as an EPC-contractor for commercial and utility scale photovoltaic (PV) plants

§   And providing tailor-made products and solutions for concentrating solar (CSP) power plants.

Siemens solar portfolio includes comprehensive solution offerings at plant level or plant sub-section level for PV and CSP for five defined solar market segments: PolySilicon Production, Wafer/Cell/Module Manufacturing, Solar Glass Production, Thin-Film Manufacturing and Field Installation (Utility and Non-Utility). We support our customers with integrated solutions for automation, control, and protection needs with products and systems such as inverters, tracking control, wireless communication, switchgear, and other key automation and power components.

Siemens Industry, Inc. is the U.S. affiliate of Siemens' global Industry Sector business-the world's leading supplier of production, transportation and building technology solutions. The company's integrated hardware and software technologies enable comprehensive industry-specific solutions for industrial and infrastructure providers to increase their productivity, sustainability and profitability. The Industry Sector includes six divisions: Building Technologies, Industry Automation, Industry Solutions, Mobility, Drive Technologies and Osram Sylvania. With nearly 204,000 Siemens Industry Sector employees worldwide, the Industry Sector posted a worldwide profit of $4.7 billion on revenues of $47.3 billion in fiscal 2010

TMEIC (Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation) 

Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation (TMEIC) was formed in 2003 by uniting the industrial systems departments of Toshiba and Mitsubishi Electric, TMA Electric Corp (TMAE) and Toshiba GE Automation system Corp. (TGAJ).  TMEIC is an industrial systems integrator contributing to production systems and management of the environment with cutting-edge technology.  TMEIC's core technologies are: "Power Electronics Technology" which control electricity reliably and efficiently; "Motor and Generator Technology" which operates machinery and produces electric power; "Power Solutions Technology" which supplies safe and stable electricity by power distribution, voltage adjustment, and energy storage; and "Automation Technology" which optimally operates plant system.  Dedicated to, "Localization & Networking", TMEIC is expanding its business by establishing roots in each region and building a global supply-chain to connect to worldwide markets.  TMEIC's ultimate goal is to be close to customers around the world and to quickly respond to their needs.  TMEIC's corporate statement, "We drive industry", represents sustained efforts in seeking new challenges.  TMEIC is dedicated to evolve together with customers and the world needs. 

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