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    Solar

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Armenia

Solar Market Outlook in Armenia

The solar market industry in Armenia is strong and has showcased consistent growth over the past decade or so. In 2014, the government launched the Scaling Up Renewable Energy Program for Armenia (SREP Armenia) as part of its commitment to promote renewable energy sources. 

This new program serves as an update to the Renewable Energy Roadmap that was launched in 2011. It specifies the targets for the deployment of renewable energy infrastructure in response to the aging conventional energy infrastructure in the country. At the same time, the government wanted to boost the country’s energy security, while also lowering the risk for potential renewable energy investors.

The target for the Armenian government is to achieve 26% of total power generation in the country from renewable sources. When it comes to the solar power market, it has been given a boost by the widespread use of solar farms. In 2019, the first micro solar farm was installed in Armenia and it produced one MW of power with the capacity to be expanded with an additional 0.5 MW of solar power. This solar farm paved the way for more solar installations in the country while also providing more jobs to the locals.

Solar Energy Equipment Supply Capacity in Armenia

There are plenty of solar panel and equipment manufacturers in Armenia, providing a variety of options for consumers and businesses looking to switch to solar power. There is also access to many other distributors and suppliers in neighboring European countries.

Top 8 Major Seaports & Logistics in Armenia

Ports are vital to the economy of Armenia since this is one of the ways that goods are traded and transported in and out of the country. The same goes for solar power equipment. 

There are a few seaports available in Armenia for transporting solar equipment namely

  • Abovyan,
  • Ararat,
  • Masis,
  • Yerevan,
  • Hrazdan, 
  • Kajaran.

Rapid Shutdowns

Rapid Shutdown

If you got your first solar panel system installed in your house, chances are you will see a box with an on/off switch that says “rapid shutdown.” But do you have any idea what does it mean or why is it important to know when installing a solar panel system at home? 

In today’s article, we will provide you with an overview of rapid shutdown requirements, and everything you need to know about it. 

What is Rapid Shutdown?

Rapid shutdown is an electrical safety regulation that requires every solar panel system to set the solar panel shut-off switch. The National Electrical Code (NEC) introduced it to the public in 2014 with the aim to provide a simple way for firefighters to quickly cut off the current in the DC conductors of the rooftop solar panel systems. It is basically set to make sure that the roof of a building is safe from fire. Usually, when the standard inverter of a solar system is switched off, the DC wiring, from the solar unit, still runs particularly when the sun is up.

Why is Rapid Shutdown Requirement Implemented?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) provides rapid shutdown requirements and writes them to the NEC to ensure safety measures. Your home may not catch fire so you don’t have to worry about rapid shutdown functionality. However, if it accidentally happens, firefighters can easily use rapid shutdown solutions to de-energize your solar panel system. 

Remember that simply turning off the solar inverter doesn’t shut down the unit. Turning it off may not power off some inverter setups, wires, and circuits, increasing the risk of electric shock. But if you have a rapid shutdown device, then you can easily power off the entire unit, reducing the electrical voltage of your solar panel system in less than a minute. Generally, the rapid shutdown code set the standard to quickly reduce the voltage of any conductors.

Is Rapid Shutdown Required?

Rapid shutdown is a safety measure of the National Electrical Code (NEC). The NEC releases a new or updated set of requirements for safe electrical systems every three consecutive years. Technically speaking, the rapid shutdown is not required everywhere in the United States, although it’s a good idea to install a solar panel system with a rapid shutdown switch. 

Another important thing to note is the NEC is not federally mandated, so individual states can freely choose to follow and abide by the code within their time frame and discretion. Some states choose an independent, state-wide electrical code instead.

Should You Comply with the Rapid Shutdown Regulation?

Generally, solar power systems without rapid shutdown switches are not totally unsafe to first fire responders. If you have a solar power system installed before the implementation of the rapid shutdown, it is less likely to expose your building to more risk. As long as your solar installer is well-experienced with the job, you have nothing to worry about.

However, if you want to be safe and secured, and for your peace of mind, it’s certainly worthwhile to follow the rapid shutdown requirement. Most of the time your installers are highly educated when it comes to changing codes for your state. They also can design your solar power system that can easily comply with all rapid shutdown requirements.