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Serial Number Validation project

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16 December 2016
RET

The Solar Photovoltaic (Panel) Serial Number Validation Project is intending to establish a voluntary mechanism that allows businesses in the supply chain to validate the authenticity of solar panels. This aims to protect the integrity of the Small-scale renewable energy scheme (SRES) and industry by directly addressing a growing concern relating to unapproved panels in Australia.

Pilot project

The first step towards voluntary Serial Number Validation, is a pilot project, which will run in the first half of 2017.

Industry participants in the pilot have been identified through an expression of interest process. Participants in the pilot are investing their own funds to build a new installer App or a new validation database.

The installer App is used by the installer to collect details of installation.

The validation service is used by installers to verify solar panel details and provides a digitally signed confirmation that products used in an installation are genuine.

Installers will use the new App to scan and check solar panel serial numbers against the manufacturer’s validation database. This electronic check will create a validated data package that can be provided to the customer and agents. Agents can then include this data package when they apply for Small-scale Technology Certificates (STCs) and the package will be automatically uploaded into the REC Registry.

Successful expressions of interest to build an installer App were received from:

  • FormBay
  • SolarScope
  • Kickstart Agile Pty Ltd

Successful expressions of interest to build a validation service were received from:

  • FormBay
  • SolarScope
  • Kickstart Agile Pty Ltd

If the pilot is successful, the Clean Energy Regulator will look to establish a voluntary Serial Number validation mechanism in the second half of 2017.

Benefits to participating in the Serial Number Validation

Industry participants in the Serial Number Validation will benefit from:

  • Marketing opportunity for both agents and manufacturers. Pilot participants can market the additional validation of PV panel serial numbers as a high quality service to consumers.
  • Lower the risk of fraud to agents. Being involved with an installation of an unapproved PV panel could result in regulatory action and reputational damage.

 

Serial Number Project Concept
Installer scans serial number
Step 1: Installer scans
Request for validation sent to manufacturer or third party database
Step 2: Request for validation
Installer receives signed data package
Step 3: Installer receives
Customer receives signed data package
Step 4a: Customer receives
Agent receives signed data package and sends to the Clean Energy Regulator
Step 4b: Agent receives
Clean Energy Regulator validates certificates
Step 5: Clean Energy Regulator validates
ParticipantDefinitionResponsibility
InstallerThe Individual who is approved to install PV systems.Providing accurate information into the Installer Application, this data is then used by the Verification Service and in the application in the REC Registry.
Importer/ ManufacturerThe organisation that distributes the products made by the Manufacturer. This may be the manufacturer or a separate organisation.Is a trusted source that will provide Serial Numbers and other product details that will used by the Verification Service to verify products used in the installation.
AgentA ‘person’ as defined by Renewable Energy Target (RET) schemeProvides verified data package to the Clean Energy Regulator.
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