The key to passive houses and positive energy buildings is thoroughly understanding the power generation capacities of the photovoltaic systems in their environments. To be exemplary and sustainable, these systems must be efficient throughout their operational periods.

With advanced experimental facilities, combined with digital methods and long-term measurement campaigns, the CSTB is guiding the development and characterization of photovoltaic components and systems for both standalone facilities and solar power plants.


The CSTB offers the following expertise:

assistance with design

  • electrical and thermal characterization taking into account weather and electrical hazards
  • characterizing overall performance of photovoltaic systems under laboratory and actual operating conditions
  • Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to characterize thermal and mechanical interactions in photovoltaic systems

assistance with implementation

  • optimizing safety in accordance with UTE and CENELEC standards
  • optimizing implementation solutions in accordance with UTE and CENELEC standards

operational support

  • analyzing optical and chemical degradation of components
  • impact of soiling and aging on photovoltaic capacity, and economic assessment
  • defining indicators to validate energy generation and meteorological behavior models
  • monitoring (including remote) and implementing associated protocols and services
  • developing response and maintenance protocols
  • INTI research and development platform for supporting the development and characterization of photovoltaic components and systems
  • PASSYS test platform for testing modular photovoltaic components integrated into facades
  • OPTORA test platform for characterizing the optical properties of glass and homogeneous flat surfaces
  • PEPSY semi-virtual laboratory for evaluating the behavior of electrical components (inverters, batteries, etc.) in photovoltaic systems under combined real and virtual conditions
  • Multiphysics and digital simulation tools