O&M Best Practices for Small-Scale PV Systems  

Education Type: 
1.5 Hours


0.2 CEU
Sponsored by: 

DOE Federal Energy Management Program - FEMP

First Thursday Seminar covers operations and maintenance (O&M) best practices for photovoltaic (PV) systems of 100 kW or less, including planning for a PV O&M scope of work and maintenance procedures to keep the system operating at optimal capacity. This course focuses on maintenance of existing PV systems and the ability to increase predictability of operations, analyzing expected versus actual output, and reducing down time. The topics covered will help energy managers plan for critical PV O&M activities; understand the necessary qualifications for service personnel; ensure proper safety procedures during diagnostics, isolation, and repair; and realize the economic benefits of a well-maintained PV array.


Brad Gustafson, Federal Energy Management Program  

Brad Gustafson is supervisor for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP). In 1995, Gustafson began supporting Federal energy initiatives as an employee of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. While at FEMP, he has acted energy savings performance contract project facilitator, technology transfer program manager, utility program manager, Federal fleet management program manager. In 2002, he served as Senate legislative advisor for Senator Lincoln Chafee. Before joining FEMP, Gustafson was program manager for the Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) HVAC program at the PG&E Energy Center.

Andy Walker, Principal Engineer, National Renewable Energy Laboratory  

Andy Walker, Ph.D., is principal engineer at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. He conducts engineering and economic analysis of energy efficiency and renewable energy projects for the Federal Energy Management Program and other non-governmental clients and specializes in assisting various organizations to plan renewable energy projects at multiple sites. Walker also teaches energy classes. He is the author of more than 28 book chapters, journal articles, and conference papers and has been recognized with 11 awards from professional associations and government agencies. He holds Bachelors of Science, Masters of Science, and Doctorate degrees in mechanical engineering from Colorado State University and is a registered professional engineer in Colorado.

Kris Sutton, Solar Energy International Instructor–Trainer, Solar Energy International  

Kris Sutton has worked full-time in the PV industry since 1999 and is a NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installer. He regularly teaches technical trainings on the design and installation of photovoltaic systems — both commercial and residential, with a heavy emphasis on safety. He has been employed as an installer, project manager, and owned his own solar consulting business working with utilities, architects, engineers, general contractors, building departments, and homeowners through all phases of the PV design and installation process. Sutton serves as Solar Energy International's Instructor-Trainer and helps develop curriculum.

Joe Villaci, IREC Certified Master Trainer/PV, Solar Energy International  

Joe Villacci specializes in system design, installation methods, and performance verification of solar electric systems. He works as a technical trainer and curriculum developer for Solar Energy International (SEI) and is responsible in part for development of SEI's PV training facility. Joe also provides design review, commissioning, and troubleshooting services. Joe is an IREC Certified Master Trainer/PV and NABCEP certified PV installation professional.

Learning Objectives

By completing this course you will have a demonstrated knowledge of:

  • Assess critical items to manage assets and plan for a complete PV O&M program;
  • Identify preventative maintenance practices necessary to perform on a regular basis;
  • Identify, isolate, and diagnose corrective maintenance and repair of failed PV components;
  • Determine and follow proven safety procedures when repairing equipment; and
  • Understand the professional qualifications of personnel required to perform work on PV equipment.