The UPVI Alliance will establish a family of standard mechanical and electrical interfaces between a solar PV module and an electrical component mounted on the module. The primary design objectives include low cost, high reliability, installer safety, compatibility across devices, cross-vendor interoperability, and manufacturability. By defining both the specifications for the physical interconnection and the electrical interfaces, any product compliant to this standard will be able to easily connect to a partner component built to the same standard. The specifications will be available to members of the UPVI Alliance.
Similar to way in which the Universal Serial Bus (USB) interface has simplified connections between IT computing and peripheral components, the UPVI will simplify connections between PV modules and module-level power electronics.
The use and deployment of products build on open standards will help achieve greater vendor independence in the supply chain, which will reduce the overall cost of solutions, which, in turn, should increase the size of the overall market. Interoperability results when components are able to work together to complete a process. Standards, by helping to define component interfaces, increase interoperability. This leads to simpler, repeatable and quicker integration efforts.