Solar energy has become a popular alternative to conventional energy sources. Technological advances resulted into more efficient photovoltaic solar panels that are less expensive that the ones in previous years. It makes it easy for every home to supplement their power source with solar energy.
Panels made from polycrystalline solar cells are the cheapest ones in the market today. This is also the most common type of panel used. It is made of a silicon block that has various crystals. The panel is square and has a mosaic-like surface. This is caused by the different crystals that compose the single panel.
Smooth solar panel is made of from silicon alone and is known as monocrystalline solar panel. The third kind of solar panel is made of thin film layer of material. This type is call amorphous and works even during cloudy days.
Polycrystalline solar cells are less efficient than single crystal ones. But they are simpler to manufacture and cost less expensive in the market. They are the cheaper alternative for people who can’t afford to buy monocrystalline solar panels.
There are several polycrystalline solar cells in the market. Some of the brands that sell them are:
On an average, polycrystalline solar cells have around twelve percent conversion efficiency. That means the cells can convert twelve percent of the energy available from sunlight into electricity. A square meter of polycrystalline solar panels can generate around 120 to 125 watts of power.
Keep in mind that standard ratings are not always indicative of how it will perform in your area. The panels are designed for relatively cool climates and rated at 25 degrees Celsius, which is around 77 degrees Fahrenheit. When the panels are used in higher temperatures, the panels will be less efficient.
The dark colored solar panels are most likely to heat up when exposed in direct sunlight. The panels would lose their efficiency by 14 to23 percent. These standards apply to all types of solar panels and not just polycrystalline solar cells. Temperature is an important factor when working with solar power installations.
Polycrystalline solar cells have their advantages and disadvantages. It is an inexpensive alternative for a solar power system. They cost less than monocrystalline panels and do the job their designed to do. You can ask a professional solar power contractor to get an estimate of how much it would cost to install one in your property.