Solar Bankability report: Technical risks in PV projects

Report on technical risks in PV project development and PV plant operation


The Solar Bankability project aims to establish a common practice for professional risk assessment which will serve to reduce the risks associated with investments in PV projects.

In this report the most important technical risks related to PV projects are identified and included in a risk matrix organised by components and divided into 5 categories to cover the whole PV value chain:

  • Product testing / development
  • PV plants planning / development
  • Transportation / installation
  • PV plant operation and maintenance
  • Decommissioning

The inclusion of the risks into a risk matrix is considered a fundamental step to enable the possibility to share failure data based on an agreed nomenclature and definition by all different stakeholders. The prioritisation of the risks is not estimated by following a classical FMEA approach i.e. by assigning a RPN value, but through a newly developed methodology that has never before been applied to PV systems: a Cost based FMEA with Cost Priority Numbers. CPNs are given in Euros/kWp or in Euros/kWp/year and can thus directly give an estimation of the economic impact of a technical risk.

Other risks can have an impact on the overall uncertainty of an initial energy yield calculation and assessment. A reduced uncertainty can in fact correspond to a higher level of energy yield for a given exceedance probability value and thus directly impact the business model. In this report, the typical uncertainties related to the main parameters affecting the energy yield are given together with an analysis of how the distribution function of a specific parameter might influence the exceedance probability. Published literature shows the importance of providing industry with a common framework that can assess the impact of technical risks on the economic performance of a PV project.

In the next years, as the availability of measured data will exponentially increase, it will be important to build a large databases, ideally with a uniform method, to increase the confidence level of the statistical analysis and thus reduce the perceived risks from investors. With the availability of these large databases the necessary information (minimum requirement) can be filtered out to perform tailored analysis in a uniform way i.e. same granularity, same data, same formulas. Our methodology and CPN attempts to provide such benchmark.


You can request the report by using the form below.

Contact us for more information

Future EPB requirements for residential buildings

New residential building envelope indicator for Flanders! […]

Energy and Buildings – Implementing a Model Predictive Control

Provide a similar or better thermal comfort while reducing the energy costs by more than 30%! […]

Press release: Solar Bankability

Discover the “Solar Bankability” project! It’s aimed at improving the attractiveness of investments in Photovoltaics. Read the press release right here! […]

MetaPV infographic

The MetaPV project explained: 50% more solar power in the grid at 10% the cost! […]

MetaPV full report

Find out how the hosting capacity of a given network can be increased by more than 50% at 10% the cost of traditional grid reinforcement […]

Geared up for South African bidding round

Market trend update from the perspective of a lender’s technical advisor By Nicola Cencelli, Renewable Energy Engineer, 3E South Africa Continued growth in the South Africa renewables market To date, 64 large-scale renewable energy projects have been awarded preferred bidder status in rounds 1 through 3 of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement […]


OffshoreGrid project results

A blueprint for European offshore grid policy OffshoreGrid is the first large-scale technical cost-benefit analysis of offshore electricity  infrastructure developments in the Northern European Seas. Aimed at policy-makers, TSOs and  the relevant regulatory authorities in Europe, the project put forward different design concepts for  North Sea grid developments and assessed their technical potential in light […]