Facilitating The Framework For Malaysia’s RE Agenda FACILITATING THE FRAMEWORK FOR MALAYSIA’S RE AGENDA Under Thrust 3 of the Five Strategic Thrusts of ...

Facilitating The Framework For Malaysia’s RE Agenda FACILITATING THE FRAMEWORK FOR MALAYSIA’S RE AGENDA Under Thrust 3 of the Five Strategic Thrusts of the National Renewable Energy Policy and Action Plan (NREPAP), there is a need to intensify human capital development in the renewable energy (RE) industry by filling the gap of local competency in RE technology.

Guided by this framework, the Sustainable Energy Development Authority (SEDA) Malaysia strives to fulfill its mandate of developing the country’s RE industry and market.

Part of SEDA’s responsibilities pertain to ensuring that RE installations in Malaysia are designed, constructed, operated, and maintained by trained engineers and technicians who work by international quality and safety standards.

Consequently, this in turn ensures that RE power plants operate for the entire committed period of time as stated in the RE power purchase agreement (REPPA) with distribution licensees (DLs) such as Tenaga Nasional (TNB), Sabah Electricity (SESB), and others.

SEDA, via our Renewable Energy Technology (RET) Division, has developed and is offering competency courses with the respective training partners as follows: a.

Grid-Connected Photovoltaic (GCPV) Systems Design Coursei.

Universiti Teknologi MARA (2013)ii.

Selangor Human Resource Development Centre (2014) b.

Off-Grid Photovoltaic (OGPV) Systems Design Coursei.

Universiti Teknologi MARA (2015) c.

GCPV for Wiremen and Chargemeni.

Universiti Kuala Lumpur British-Malaysian Institute (UniKL BMI), Gombak (2013)ii.

Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka (UTeM), Melaka (2015)iii.

Akademi Binaan Malaysia (ABM) Wilayah Utara, Kedah (2016)iv.

Kolej Kemahiran Tinggi MARA (KKTM), Pasir Mas (2016)v.

Institut Kemahiran MARA (IKM), Kota Kinabalu (2016) d.

Installation and Maintenance of GCPVi.

Akademi Binaan Malaysia (ABM) Wilayah Utara (2014)ii.

Selangor Human Resource Development Centre (SHRDC) (2015)iii.

Kedah Industrial Skills & Management Industrial Centre (KISMEC) (2016)iv.

Terengganu Skills Development Centre (TESDEC) (2017)v.

Universiti Kuala Lumpur British-Malaysian Institute (UniKL BMI), Gombak (2017) e.

Operation and Maintenance of Biogas Power Plantsi.

Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN), Selangor (2017) Our industry partners and training providers show their commitment by offering these courses on a regular basis.

Some of them have even started embedding selected courses into their M.A.

Programmes and as value-adding courses in their B.A.


The total number of participants that have been trained as of October 2017 are as follows: Notably, these training courses were developed via engaging with relevant RE stakeholders such as the Malaysian Photovoltaic Industry Association (MPIA), training institutions, and government bodies such as the Energy Commission (ST), and the Department of Skills Development (JPK) of the Ministry of Human Resource to keep in line with the applicable Malaysian requirements and standards.

Our Biogas Power Plant Training course was very recently developed based on the National Occupational Skills Standards (NOSS), making successful trainees who have completed the course qualified for NOSS certification by JPK.

SEDA’s solar PV courses were developed with a strong emphasis on safety, an aspect that can be found in designing, operating, and maintenance.

Part of this is because even though solar PV systems are considered to be just like any other electrical system, they are still systems with direct current (DC) behaviour which is more dangerous compared to the common alternating current (AC) electrical systems.

For example, the GCPV Systems Design Course covers the designing of GCPV systems including solar PV modules, inverters, and other associated equipment suitable for Malaysia’s climate and capable of producing optimal outputs and performances.

This Course has attracted many international participants from around Asia.

SEDA’s PV training also caught the attention of the ASEAN Centre of Energy, which led to them appointing us to conduct a PV management training session for ASEAN member states back in 2013.

An important fact to remember is that a company must have at least one employee qualified in GCPV systems design in order to become a registered PV service provider (RPVSP).

RPVSP is another strategy for SEDA whereby only certified RPVSPs can undertake solar PV installations, ensuring the safety and quality of these installations.

To date, ~120 RPVSPs are available mainly from SMEs established due to the solar PV market in the country.

The maturation of our PV market is evident in some of the RPVSPs who have began to export their services regionally, as a result of applying the knowledge and skills gained from SEDA’s RE training courses.

As the statutory body responsible for sustaining the country’s RE agenda, SEDA is also responsible for developing strong government RE policies to support market growth and to create healthy competition amongst industry players.

This includes providing a conducive environment for the development of the PV industry by offering the aforementioned competency courses as well as administering industry players with standard compliances.

“Part of SEDA’s responsibilities pertain to ensuring that RE installations in Malaysia are designed, constructed, operated,  strained engineers and technicians who work by international quality and safety standards.” SEDA has acknowledged and adopted the relevant Malaysian standards for its RE projects under the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) mechanism, especially for solar PV systems that are growing tremendously in the country.

The Department of Standards Malaysia (Standards Malaysia) had pooled together local PV experts to develop various series of Malaysian Standards (MS) for solar PV systems.

SEDA has been an active member of the Solar PV Working Group (WG) since its inception.

The WG’s deliberations led to Standards Malaysia publishing a number of MS series for both on-grid and off-grid solar PV systems.

One important standard is MS 1837:2010 which concerns the installation of GCPV systems.

It has been used as the main guide and requirements for the industry and government alike in designing GCPV systems.

Under RE Act 2011 [Act 725], there is also a subsidiary legislation on the Technical and Operational (T&O) Requirements Rules to be complied by all projects under the FiT mechanism.

To supplement these requirements, SEDA developed procedures for the testing and commissioning of RE systems.

The technical experts from SEDA will visit RE installation sites to ensure proper system installation before Testing and Commissioning.

We are very much aware of the gravity of responsibility when it comes to monitoring the construction of all RE installations, a huge task that must be undertaken.

Hence, the series of procedures for testing and commissioning solar PV, biomass, and biogas projects was established to ensure that installations meet and comply with international standards in terms of quality, reliability, and safety – all of which will impact plant performance.

The proliferation of solar PV installations made it imperative for SEDA to certify that these installations meet the aforementioned international standards.

A lot of emphasis was put on solar PV in the beginning, simply because it is fast-growing and can be applied almost anywhere compared to other RE installations (as long as there is available roof space).

In view of Malaysia’s commitment to the Paris Agreement, numerous initiatives were and are being implemented across the board of government sectors.

For example, under the 2014 budget speech, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohammad Najib Tun Abdul Razak announced the approval of funding for installing solar PV systems for government buildings.

The Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water (KeTTHA) was assigned to coordinate the project with SEDA as the implementing agency.

This initiative demonstrated the participation and commitment of the Malaysian government to realising the Renewable Energy and Green Technology agenda, by showcasing a Government Lead By Example (GLBE) approach with promoting RE in government buildings.

The implementation of this project saw SEDA successfully commissioning the installation of solar PV systems for 25 selected government buildings in Putrajaya, culminating in a total installed capacity of 670kWp.

Another showcase project featuring solar PV serves as the pedestrian roof walkway between the National Cancer Institute (IKN) and Putrajaya Hospital, completed with a capacity of 70kWp.

The Ministry of Health fully supported this effort as it is in line with their initiatives to Green the country’s hospitals.

Both of the aforementioned projects have been estimated to generate ~880MWh per year from the total 740kWp capacity of both solar PV systems, and this helps to eliminate about 616 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.

Also of note is the development of the National PV Monitoring and Performance Database.

Expected to be ready by mid-2018, this web portal will be able to monitor selected solar PV plants on a national scale, live and historically.

The monitoring and performance analysis of these plants have become a necessity to ensure high performance, low downtime, and fault detection in any given power plant.

At-site weather data and generation data from inverters also need to be continuously collected for monitoring and performance analysis.

The Database project will additionally provide site-to-site VPN solutions which connects the plants’ monitoring systems to SEDA’s office for said monitoring purposes, data transmissions, remote management using the dedicated communication network, and will also allow users to subscribe to or purchase data reports generated by the system.

– courtesy of SEDA Malaysia Part of the Renewable Energy Technology (RET) Division, led by Director Azah Ahmad.

Feedback for this article was provided by Azah Ahmad (Director), Edisham Mohd Sukor, Zurlinda Asma Aziz, and Mohd Idham Mohammad of the Renewable Energy Technology (RET) Division..

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