Global measuring and testing systems
PES had a very interesting conversation with Dirk Tegtmeyer, one of the founders of Ingenieurbüro Mencke & Tegtmeyer GmbH. Quality, customisation, a real interest in the technology and continually striving to reach the next level, along with staff driven by the same aim, is what keeps this successful company at the top.
PES: Welcome back to PES Solar/PV magazine, Dirk. It’s great to talk with you again. For the benefit of our new readers would you like to begin by explaining a little about the background of Ingenieurbüro Mencke & Tegtmeyer GmbH (IMT) and the importance of the Solar/PV industry to you?
Dirk Tegtmeyer: We started in July 1993 as the first spin-off from the Institut für Solarenergieforschung (ISFH, Institute for Solar Energy Research) the founders, myself and Detlef Mencke, wanted to bring our master thesis on silicon irradiance sensor with internal temperature compensation of the irradiance signal, steady-state sun simulators and I-V curve analyzers for PV, to the market.
The first IMT expansion was in 1999, when we got our first employee, Nikolai Maris, who now is also an associate. Until 2011 we were continuously growing, but this slowed down a little bit in 2012 and 2013 because of the German politics on renewables.
Since then we have increased our export quota massively and therefore stabilized and this year it seems, that we will get back to the size we were in 2011. Since the beginning we have extended our product portfolio to all kinds of sun simulation, like flash-light and LED based simulators, as well as steady-state simulators for solar thermal collectors and specific PV modules, which have a higher response time due to their material e.g. thin film.
We produce our own temperature sensors for ambient and module temperature measurement and optimized the uncertainty of our Si sensors by more than twice what it was.
All big monitoring companies worldwide use our silicon irradiance sensors. We install complete measuring systems for research institutes and industry. We also have experiences in planning PV systems, especially customized building integrated PV generators, but this part of business is decreasing, because these installations are very few today in Germany.
PES: Is this a growing market for you?
DT: Of course, the PV market worldwide is increasing and therefore it is also a growing market for IMT. It’s a great feeling: renewable energies can compete with the old energy monopoly, and hopefully make the world a better place. Renewable energies, not the components, are mostly produced locally, so that the people have the direct advantage within their region.
At IMT we all love the rise in PV solar systems and the more independence we are gaining from oil and gas. At the very least we have a part in all the PV systems built with monitoring systems, by supplying our irradiance and temperature sensors.