WIND TURBINE FIELD TESTING

ICC-SWCC review utilizes two data streams en route to certification: structural analysis and field-testing results. Field testing takes by far the longest time to complete as testing must be performed in “free air.” Consequently, ICC-SWCC makes several field testing options available to expedite the process for applicants.

Accredited/Non-accredited Testing Laboratories

ICC-SWCC applicants may choose to use an accredited or non-accredited laboratory, or to conduct the testing themselves (subject to ICC-SWCC policies). Testing organizations accredited to ISO/IEC 17025 include the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, CO, and a handful of other labs in Canada, United Kingdom, and Germany. Testing organizations who are not accredited to ISO/IEC 17025 must undergo ICC-SWCC evaluation and approval and include the NREL Regional Test Centers as well as several organizations across North America.

Test reports from accredited organizations, such as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), require the minimum level of scrutiny from ICC-SWCC. Test reports from non-accredited organizations require a higher level of scrutiny to independently verify the test setup complies with the applicable standards, the competence of the organization, and the quality of the test reports. ICC-SWCC will audit all non-accredited test organizations providing testing for the purposes of obtaining SWT or MWT certification.  Non-accredited testing organizations or self-testing are required to sign a testing agreement with ICC-SWCC, agreeing to the test plans and a ICC-SWCC test site evaluation. Test site evaluations are conducted by ICC-SWCC technical staff or designees.  The applicant is responsible for Site Evaluation Fees, which include inspector travel costs.

Field Testing Requirements

All testing must comply with the applicable standards and all ICC-SWCC Policies. All testing costs are the responsibility of the certification applicant and must be negotiated and paid directly to the testing organization.  ICC-SWCC does not conduct testing directly, nor does it select the testing organization to be used for a given application.  Details about field testing requirements are provided in the ICC-SWCC Certification Policy, which is available upon request.

ICC-SWCC maintains a list of test organizations that provide testing services for small and/or medium wind turbines seeking certification.  Note: The list may not be all-inclusive, nor is it and endorsement of any test organization or individual.

Existing Test Reports

Applicants with existing test reports and other certifications for their turbine(s) should contact ICC-SWCC for a review of the applicability to the SWT or MWT programs.  Existing test reports may be used in whole or in part to support an application for ICC-SWCC certification, subject to the approval of the ICC-SWCC Certification Commission and compliance with ICC-SWCC policies.