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SunPower Successfully Passes TUV Rheinland's Rigorous Sand and Dust Testing

TEMPE, Ariz. and SAN JOSE, Calif., May 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- TUV Rheinland and SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) today announced that SunPower has successfully passed TUV Rheinland's rigorous sand abrasion testing for photovoltaic (PV) modules, system components and mounting structures.

TUV Rheinland experts have researched different desert conditions such as sand grain size and wind speeds, and identified a set of parameters that can be used as a benchmark for PV modules and other system components. TUV Rheinland first proposed the initial test sequence at the 39th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference in 2013.  

The criteria for the new test include UV aging and are based on the U.S. technical military standards. To conduct sand abrasion testing on SunPower PV modules, TUV Rheinland partnered with National Technical Systems (NTS), based in Calabasas, Calif., which has extensive expertise in sand and dust testing.

Further development of the test standard is ongoing at TUV Rheinland in Cologne, Germany. The goal of the development is to provide a comprehensive approach to evaluating modules that will be installed in a desert environment.

Florian Reil, business field manager for innovations in the solar branch at TUV Rheinland, stated: "There is a definite need for sand abrasion testing, but we wanted to develop it as part of a complete reliability testing approach for such environments.  With the significant growth of PV forecasted through 2030 in desert regions, such as the Southwestern U.S. and Middle East, these tests are particularly timely."

"We are pleased to be the first solar company to successfully pass the new sand abrasion testing criteria developed by TUV Rheinland," said Jack Peurach, SunPower EVP, products. "Our high efficiency solar panels withstood real world stresses such as dust storms, intense UV aging and erosive sand that impact glass and back sheets, adding these results to other reliability tests recently performed by independent labs."

About SunPower
SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ:SPWR) designs, manufactures and delivers the highest efficiency, highest reliability solar panels and systems available today. Residential business, government and utility customers rely on the company's quarter century of experience and guaranteed performance to provide maximum return on investment throughout the life of the solar system. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., SunPower has offices in North America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia. For more information, visit www.sunpower.com.

About TUV Rheinland
Founded in 1872, TUV Rheinland is a global leader in independent testing, inspection, and certification services, ensuring quality, efficiency and safety for people, the environment and technology in nearly all aspects of life. The company maintains presence in 66 countries, employs 18,000 people and has an annual revenue of more than $2.2 billion (€1.6 billion). TUV Rheinland inspects technical equipment, products and services, oversees projects and helps to shape processes for a wide variety of companies through its worldwide network of approved labs, testing facilities and education centers. Since 2006, the company has been a member of the United Nations Global Compact to promote sustainability and combat corruption. For more information, visit www.tuv.com/us.

SOURCE SunPower Corp.

For further information: Yuliya Kutuzava, Charles Wintrub, Catalyst Marketing Communications, Inc., (203) 348-7541, Helen D. Kendrick, SunPower Corp., (408) 240-5585, hkendrick@sunpower.com, or Hope Mascott, TUV Rheinland North America, (978) 266-9500