SunSpec Alliance and UC San Diego Extension Announce Winter 2019 CA Rule 21 and Secure Communication Networking Courses

SunSpec press release winter 2019 UCSDX courses image

At the intersection of power generation and data communications, course offerings appeal to electrical and software engineers, grid specialists and solar executives

SAN JOSE & SAN DIEGO, CA – January 7, 2019 – SunSpec Alliance, the information standards and certification organization for the Distributed Energy Resource (DER) industry, and UC San Diego Extension have announced Winter 2019 course opportunities related to California Rule 21 and Secure Communication Networks for Distributed Energy Resources.

SunSpec CA Rule 21 educational courses accelerate the deployment of CA Rule 21 compliant systems and products as well as the development of the DER workforce. Education is offered in both self-paced online and workshop formats to appeal to electrical and software engineers as well as industry executives. The winter online course starts on January 8, 2019, with registration available until January 15, 2019.  The CA Rule 21 executive workshop is scheduled for January 24, 2019 at the UC San Diego Extension office.

“The rules of working in the DER business have changed forever. Information standards and DER networks are now the norm. Our workshops and online curriculum offered with UC San Diego Extension are generating strong support from the industry, training personnel to meet CA Rule 21 requirements and build digital energy networks,” said Tom Tansy, Chairman, SunSpec Alliance.

SunSpec press release Tom Tansy quote imageUnder the auspices of the UC San Diego Sustainable Power and Energy Center, the campus is the host of the SunSpec smart inverter testing laboratory. The laboratory uses the SunSpec System Validation Platform (SunSpec SVP), a framework for testing and validating SunSpec compliant devices and applications. A common use case for device functional testing is inverter control functionality, which is the central focus of the lab.

This UC San Diego hosted project is the only such research project resulting in a UC San Diego Extension course. The online course is a part of the Power Systems Engineering certificate program, bridging the gap between power generation and data communications. Those who complete the course earn three-unit credits.

“UC San Diego Extension decided to partner with SunSpec in delivering the course ‘Secure Communication Networking for Distributed Energy Resources’ due to the leadership and innovation that SunSpec provides in the general solar industry and particularly in developing new solar related standards,” said Svetislav Maric PhD., Director of Engineering and IT Programs. “UC San Diego Extension’s goal is to always bring the newest developments in technology to the professional technology community. Our courses in power systems and specifically solar technology will help engineers become familiar with the field, further enhancing their professional expertise.”

Secure Communication Networking for Distributed Energy Resources – Winter 2019 Online Course

This fully online 9-week course is intended to provide current and future engineers working in the distributed energy industry with the information they need to design products that incorporate secure communication networking and deploy networks that incorporate these products. The course will also cover considerations associated with integrating the operations of utilities and network aggregators. While students have 9 weeks to complete the course, it is self-paced and can be completed as quickly or slowly as a student requires.

Course Benefits

By course completion students will understand and identify:

  • Distributed Energy Resource (DER) market opportunity framework.
  • Grid standards and DER Functions relevant to U.S and non-U.S. markets.
  • DER functions relevant to California and other U.S. markets.
  • Popular communication protocols for DER in the U.S.
  • Communication and cybersecurity requirements for California Rule 21.
  • Product testing and certification requirements for California Rule 21 Product Compliance.
  • Considerations for deploying secure DER compliant networks to California Rule 21 requirements.

Course instructor videos at

Register | UC San Diego Extension

Testimonials for the Online Technical Course

“Coming out of the aerospace industry I needed to understand DER communication requirements. This course was extremely helpful and covered all my major questions. The self-paced format was extremely convenient and I’m recommending this course to many of my coworkers in a similar situation as myself. The content of this course was extremely well selected and provided both breadth and depth of information on the DER communication issues we are wrestling with.”
– Jim Burdette, Flex Power Control, Inc.

“Rule 21 is a great new opportunity for my company. I took this course to put myself in the best possible position to take advantage of it. After taking the course, I definitely recommend it. This course can help anyone regardless of their experience level in the DER industry to help them understand common problems from increased DER penetration as well as identify solutions to these problems.”
– Bahram Emami, Power System & Solar Energy Engineer, Sunny Energy, LLC

The California Rule 21 Market Opportunity for Executives – January 24 2019 Workshop

This one day in-person workshop hosted by the SunSpec Alliance provides distributed energy business executives, entrepreneurs, and others looking to enter the industry with foundational understanding of the California Rule 21 opportunity. Topics will include distributed energy market dynamics; market sizing, business models, and competitive barriers; technical details regarding Distributed Energy Resource (DER) data communication and functional requirements; and considerations about how to deploy DER networks in California and across the US.

Register via SunSpec Alliance

Testimonials for the CA Rule 21 Executive Workshop

“My colleague and I attended a SunSpec CA Rule 21 Executive Training workshop. The speakers were great, afterwards the networking was great. There was a tremendous discussion and it was really good interaction with a lot of the other execs. I was very pleased with it.”
– David Erhart, Vice President of Engineering, STEM

“As the leading developer of the IEEE 2030.5 DER specification mandated by CA Rule 21, SunSpec is ideally suited to help educate the industry on the requirements and deadlines that are rapidly approaching. LG Electronics is proud to support this important workshop that will help ensure that California and the U.S. market is prepared as DERs make up an ever-increasing share of the overall energy mix.”
– Tilak Gopalarathnam, Director of Technology Partnerships, LG Electronics

About SunSpec Alliance
SunSpec Alliance is the information standards and certification organization for the Distributed Energy Resources industry. SunSpec communication standards address operational requirements of solar and energy storage on the smart grid to reduce cost, promote technology innovation, and accelerate industry growth. More information at:

About UC San Diego Extension
As the continuing education and public programs arm of the university, UC San Diego Extension educates approximately 62,000 enrollees a year, which translates to about 25,000 students in nearly 4,300 courses. UC San Diego Extension is recognized nationally and internationally for linking the public to expert professionals and the knowledge resources of the University of California.

Media Contacts
SunSpec Alliance

Tom Tansy
T: 408-217-9110

UC San Diego Extension
Jericho Lopez
T: 1 619 400 7087

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