Date(s) - 10/10/2019 - 10/14/2019
8:00 am - 5:00 pm

University of Dayton

Course Content Includes:

Basic Principles and Concepts of Electricity

Basic Principles and Concepts of Photovoltaics
  • How photovoltaic cells work
  • Solar cell efficiency
  • Factors affecting cell performance
  • Types of photovoltaic cells
  • Advantages and disadvantages of photovoltaic technology
  • Solar panel specifications
  • Standard Test Conditions (STC)

Photovoltaic System Components

  • Inverters (square wave, modified square wave, sine-wave)
  • Balance of system (BOS) components
    • Junction box
    • Combiners
    • Battery system
    • Controllers
    • Maximum Power Point tracking
    • Inverter
    • Disconnects

Standard system configurations

  • Stand-alone Systems
  • Grid-tied Systems
    • String Inverter
    • Microinverters
    • Power Optimizers
  • DC Coupled Systems
  • AC Coupled Systems
  • Hybrid systems

Site assessment

  • Locating true south (lines of declination)
  • Shading issues
  • Panel orientation (altitude and azimuth)
  • Array mounting options and issues
    • Rooftop
      • Available area
      • Structural integrity
      • Stand off requirements
      • Loading issues
      • Inter row shading
    • Ground mounted
    • Top pole
      • Side pole
      • Tracking systems
    • Building Integrated systems
  • Determining available sunlight
    • Solar insolation maps
    • Use of a Solar Pathfinder
    • Solar window

Designing a PV system

  • Load requirements
  • Calculating electrical use
    • Assessing electric bills
    • Load variations
    • Cycling loads
    • Phantom loads
    • Induction motors
  • Selecting a panel
    • Panel specifications
  • Determining system inefficiencies
    • Inverter efficiencies
    • BOS inefficiencies
  • Wiring selection and voltage drop issues
  • Temperature adjustments
  • Estimating the size of the array
  • Calculating number of panels given specifications and load requirements
    • Determine maximum voltage of system and adjust for temperature variations
    • Calculate number of panels and number of strings
  • Determine compatibility to BOS components
  • Grounding, bonding and over-current issues
  • Pricing the system as designed (current costs, incentives)
  • Connecting to the grid
  • Troubleshooting problems

Battery Systems

  • Types of batteries
  • Determining nominal voltage
  • Calculating Amp hour storage requirements
  • Depth of discharge
  • Temperature adjustments
  • Battery bank sizing calculations
  • How batteries are charged
    • Bulk charge
    • Absorption charge
    • Floating charge
  • Battery storage and maintenance issues
    • Venting
    • Equalization
    • Measuring state of charge
  • Battery safety issues

System Installation

  • Racking Systems
  • Loading Issues
  • Climbing Safety
  • Ground Mounted System
  • Conduit Installation and Fill Issues


  • Required Documentation/Application Package
    • Interconnect Agreements
    • Net Metering Agreements
    • Required Permits
    • Commissioning Forms
    • Installation Checklists
    • Operation and Maintenance Documentation

Testing and Commissioning the System

  • Final Installation Checklist
  • Visual Inspection
  • Verification of Code Compliance
  • Electrical System Verification Testing
  • System Functioning Testing
  • Verify Array Power and Energy Production against STC
  • Derating Factor Components

System Maintenance and Troubleshooting

  • Monitoring Performance
  • Typical Systems Problems and how to Correct Them
  • System Maintenance

This course prepares you to sit for the ETA Photovoltaic Installer (PVI) Level 1. It is the first level of ETA’s certifications designed to assess renewable energy professionals. It is also a great first step for those seeking to enter the PV industry, and perhaps later prepare to sit for the ETA Photovoltaic Installer Level 2 or  NABCEP PV certification programs.

This course is offered throughout the midwest in partnership with several not-for-profits.  The fee for this one-week course is $970 and includes:  Instruction, hands-on labs, textbook and lab material, ETA examination, and (in most cases) lunch.  This course is also eligible for VA and Americorps funding.  Scholarships may also be available based on need.  Contact us at 740-674-4300 for further details regarding the management of fees.

Early Registration Fee:  $970 (includes ETA examination fee, course materials and solar installation tool kit)*

University of Dayton Student Registration Fee:  $770 (discount arranged with UD Ethos Project)

This course is offered during the mid-term break at UD. The examination will be given the evening of Monday, October 14th.
After October 1st, price increases to $1,070


(*by registering, you agree to the terms outlined in the Waiver of Liability)

*Give us a call regarding multi-registration discounts


Residential Solar PV Workshop (Dayton, OH)- prepares for ETA Level 1 PV Certification