Time Estimate: Typically 10 – 18 weeks from start of testing

The Quality Test Method (QTM) is the full test method used to verify comprehensive product quality and performance. Results from QTM testing are used to determine if a product has met the Quality Standards. Random selection of the product samples that are to be sent to the test lab is required and must be arranged in advance through Lighting Global.

  • Pico-solar products (products with peak power rating of less than 15 W) are tested according to the latest version of IEC/TS 62257-9-5. This and other key IEC documents for rural electrification are currently available at a discount for qualified stakeholders. Tests for pico-solar products use a sample size of six. A total of at least 18 product samples, selected from a stock of at least 500 units, will be required for QTM testing.
    [If additional tests are required or the manufacturer requests that mechanical durability tests be conducted on unaltered samples, additional samples may be selected.]
  • Solar home system kits, which for the purposes of Lighting Global are products with peak power ratings between 10 W – 100 W, are tested according to the Lighting Global Solar Home System Kit Quality Assurance Protocols. These methods are available from Lighting Global upon request. Tests for SHS kits use a sample size of four. A total of at least 16 product samples, selected from a stock of at least 200 units, will be required for QTM testing.
    [If additional tests are required or the manufacturer requests that mechanical durability tests be conducted on unaltered samples, additional samples may be selected.]

For products with peak power ratings between 10 W – 15 W, manufacturers may choose which methods they would prefer be used. The SHS kit method is more appropriate for products that include appliances, though some country governments require testing according to IEC/TS 62257-9-5 for all products up to 15 W.

Step 1: Inform the Lighting Global Quality Assurance Team that you are interested in testing your product(s) with this method.

Step 2: A member of the QA team will follow up with you to determine an appropriate test plan. Note that the QA team develops this test plan with the information that you provided via the online Manufacturer Information Form. Also, you may be asked to clarify and/or provide more information, if needed.

Step 3: Choose an approved test lab for QTM testing by Lighting Global, and determine with the lab aspects like availability and cost of testing. For more information, please review a this list of approved test labs and related policies are below.

Step 4: After choosing a lab, your company and the lab will enter into contract for testing. However, you will remain in contact with the QA team to arrange sampling. Note that contracting and payment of testing fees is handled between you and the test lab.

Step 5: In parallel, the QA team will prepare and send you the QTM testing agreement (which includes the test plan) via email to digitally sign and return before testing can begin.

Step 6: Once you sign and return the test agreement, you automatically agree to pay the fees associated with test coordination, random sampling, review, and reporting services. These services typically cost US$ 1000, but may increase depending on the logistics associated with random sampling. This cost does NOT include the testing fees, which are determined by the test lab.

Step 7: The QA team will request you to complete an online Sampling Form. After you submit the form, the QA team will send a sampling agent to randomly select at least 16-18 units of the product for QTM testing. Note that once samples are selected, it is your responsibility to have the samples shipped to the test lab and pay all associated shipping fees, duties and taxes. For more information read the following program policy.

Step 8: When testing is complete, the test lab will sends the test results and draft test report the Lighting Global QA team for review. Note that test results sent directly to us by the client (you) will not be considered valid.

Step 9: The Lighting Global QA team reviews the test report, determines whether the product meets the requirements of the Lighting Global Quality Standards, and verifies that all fees to the test lab and Lighting Global were paid, before sending the results to the manufacturer. For more information, please read the following program requirements.

Step 10: If a product meets the Lighting Global Quality Standards, the QA team drafts and delivers a Standardized Specification Sheet (SSS) and a Verification Letter (VL). For more information about these supporting documents, please read the following program guidelines and/or requirements.

Step 11: After a product meets the quality standards, the QA team coordinates the process of featuring the product on the Lighting Global website, along with its Standardized Specification Sheet and Verification Letter. Note that this website serves as the official site to confirm that the Lighting Global Program supports your product and that its Specification Sheet and Verification Letter are valid.

Key notes to consider:

Products that meet the Quality Standards may also apply for Associate Status to receive additional business services.

Results will be valid for two years. During that time, the product may be subject to Market Check Testing. The product’s results may be renewed for another two years using Associate Renewal Testing.

Your company may make ongoing, incremental changes to your product. You should alert us when these occur. If the changes to performance are small (e.g., making a small update to the Standardized Specifications Sheet), no further testing will be required to maintain your status with the program. Large changes (generally, greater than 10% difference in performance) may require targeted re-testing to maintain your status.