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This press release from ICE was published using an automatic translation system.
With the recent installation of state-of-the-art technology, the Energy Efficiency Laboratory of ICE (LEE) expanded its quality assessment services for the photovoltaic systems available in the market.
After the incorporation of these new equipment, the LEE has already made three measurements for a national supplier of solar panels.
In this space of the ICE, specifications of panels, inverters, charge controllers and batteries are verified.
"The tests consist of evaluating the main characteristic of the photovoltaic panels, called curve IV, from which information of maximum power produced and efficiency is obtained, as well as the general performance of the module and the materials", explained Virgilio Jiménez, coordinator of the Laboratory.
The implementation of this technology represented an investment of $ 1.8 million - financed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) -, which included the acquisition of a solar photovoltaic simulator and a system for measuring inverters and batteries.
This specialized laboratory of the Institute was created in 1988 and is the only one of its kind in Central America and the Caribbean. In addition to the mentioned tasks, it makes efficiency measurements and other parameters in electrical consumption equipment (See box).
It provides services to electric companies, manufacturers and marketers of equipment -both national and international-, with the aim of checking compliance with technical and regulatory specifications.
"Approximately 800 tests are carried out per year in all the areas that make up this ICE laboratory," explained Jiménez.
Currently the LEE has 55 clients, of which 17 are foreigners. The nationals are mostly importers; the rest of the tests are carried out for ICE and other electricity companies in the country.
The laboratory has provided services to companies in Central America, Mexico, the United States, Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela, Peru, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
As of 2008, the LEE initiated an accreditation process by the Costa Rican Accreditation Entity (ECA), through the development of a Quality Management System. This guarantees to the clients that the test reports have validity and recognition inside and outside of Costa Rica.
The total investment made in the Laboratory amounts to approximately $ 6.5 million.
• Illumination systems.
• Domestic and commercial refrigeration.
• Electric cookers (resistive and induction).
• Squirrel cage electric motors.
• Household clothes washers.
• Solar collectors.
• Electric water heaters.
• Photovoltaic panels, inverters, charge controllers and batteries.