The Central Power Research Institute (CPRI) will soon get a regional testing laboratory at Nashik, Maharashtra.
The Minister for Power, R.K. Singh, recently laid the foundation for the new center. CPRI is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Power and serves as an independent third-party testing laboratory. It was established in 1960 and has its headquarters in Bangalore.
The Nashik lab will benefit the manufacturers of electrical equipment in the western region as they can test their products close to their manufacturing units. This would also reduce the turnaround time and overhead cost.
The testing lab at Nashik will have on line short circuit test facilities for transformers, miniature circuit breakers, contactors, switch fuse unit, panels, busducts and current transformers. In addition, facilities are being established for energy meters (both smart meter and conventional meter).
Recently, Mercom published a report that highlighted the lack of testing facilities in the country and how it is creating problems for solar inverter manufacturers in getting their products tested and getting compulsory registration with the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) for the implementation of the government order titled Solar Photovoltaics Systems, Devices and Component Goods Order 2017.
In December 2017, MNRE had issued National Lab Policy to improve the quality and reliability of renewable energy projects in India. The policy was aimed to create a robust and efficient system of testing, standardization, and certification for the renewable energy sector.
In March 2018, Mercom reported that the National Lab Policy could slow down project commissioning due to lack of testing centers.
Joerg Althaus, Regional Field Manager Solar – India, Middle East, Africa and Germany of TUV Rheinland had stated in an interview with Mercom last year that mobile solar module testing vans have higher uncertainty of measurement.