Solar cells are made with semiconductor materials, namely germanium and silicon. Generally, silicon is the most widely used of the two in the solar industry. But why do solar panels have different colours?
Well, it is because of the purity of silicon content in the solar cells. Solar cells with the purest silicon have a darker appearance. In fact, if you use a solar panel output calculator for different solar cells, you’ll realise that the efficiency will vary according to the type of cells (mono or poly).
Want to understand more about a solar panel output calculator, how solar cells are made, and more? If so, dive in! We have all the answers!
The Process of Making Solar Cells
To make solar cells, manufacturers primarily process silicon. Afterward, the purest form of silicon is available in the form of a cylinder. From this cylinder, small wafers are cut to make solar cells.
The pure silicon, the higher the efficiency of solar cells. An accurate solar panel output calculator will always give the following readings:
- – The efficiency of poly panels: between 16-17%
- – The efficiency of mono panels: between 19-20%
How do Solar Cells Work?
Before we walk you through the details of how a solar panel output calculator works, you need to know how solar cells work. Let’s find out.
- – When solar panels made of solar cells receive sunlight, the semiconductor layer traps the photons present in the light.
- – Further, these photons collide with the electrons in the solar cells to activate them.
- – During this collision, an electric charge is generated.
- – The generated charge is in the form of DC power. It is transferred to the solar inverter to be transformed into AC power.
Bear in mind that different types of solar panels are made with different semiconductor solar cells; hence, their capacity and efficiency also differ. Therefore, when you use a solar panel output calculator, the results will vary for each type of solar cell.
Different Types of Solar Cells
There are two types of solar cells that are widely used to make solar panels. These are:
- – Monocrystalline solar cells: Solar panels made with monocrystalline cells have a black colour because they consist of the purest silicon material. According to an accurate solar panel output calculator, the efficiency of mono cells is between 19-20%.
- – Polycrystalline solar cells: These are made by melting silicon and pouring the liquid into a mould, making it look slightly bluish. Since poly cells do not contain a pure silicon base, they’re not as efficient as mono cells. As per any accurate solar panel output calculator, the efficiency of poly panels ranges between 16-17%.
Following are the crucial differences between these two types of solar cells:
|Monocrystalline solar cells||Polycrystalline solar cells|
|Low-temperature coefficient, resulting in more effectiveness.||Temperature changes affect the working of these cells more than the mono cells.|
|The annual degradation rate is about 0.5%.||The annual degradation rates range between 0.7-0.8%.|
|Government is yet to start subsidies on panels made of mono cells.||Government subsidy is available for panels made of poly cells.|
Power Generation from Solar Cells
A single solar cell generates around 0.5 to 0.6 volts. In a solar panel output calculator, this power reflects an electric current of 28 to 40 milliamp, per sq cm. However, in a large solar system, solar panels are interconnected to produce a high amount of solar energy.
Still, certain factors like the tilt of the solar panels, shadows on the solar panel, and irradiance affect the results of a solar panel output calculator.
Considering all these factors, an accurate solar panel power calculation is as follows:
Pricing of the Solar Cells
Now that you know the power generation of different capacity solar systems using a solar panel output calculator, let’s look at the price of solar cells.
The price of solar panels is not fixed. It keeps changing according to the type of solar cell and manufacturer. However, a monocrystalline solar cell costs around Rs. 30-31/watt. Whereas, a polycrystalline solar panel costs approximately Rs. 25.5/watt.
Pros and Cons of Solar Cells
You already know the fact that the efficiency of solar cells, as per an accurate solar panel output calculator, varies. It’s also about time you learn the pros and cons of solar cells.
The following table will provide all the information.
|They do not result in the production of greenhouse gases.||You need a slightly higher investment to install a rooftop solar system.|
|You can save a lot of money since a solar system will reduce your electricity bill.||Power generation depends on the availability of sunlight.|
|Panels made of solar cells are extremely convenient power generation options for places devoid of utility connections.||–|
|They are highly durable.||–|
Why isn’t Solar Energy More Popular?
The primary reason behind this is the slightly higher investment people need to get a fully functional solar system. To solve this issue, the government provides subsidies to people.
With awareness and new policies, solar energy is getting more popular day by day.
A solar panel output calculator can help you figure out the efficiency of solar cells. A general thumb rule says that a 1 KW solar system should ideally produce 4 units of electricity.
Q. How much money do I need to spend to get a 2 KW solar system?
The price of a 2 KW solar system depends on the type of solar cell. Although there’s no one price tag, there’s a price range: Rs. 70,000 to Rs. 1,40,000.
Q. Can I get the benefit of a subsidy for installing monocrystalline solar panels?
At present, the government provides subsidy benefits only for Made-in-India solar panels. Since mono panels are yet not made within the country, a subsidy isn’t available for them.
Q. What is the degradation rate of mono and poly solar cells?
As per the readings of a solar panel output calculator of the best kinds, monocrystalline solar cells degrade at a rate of 0.5% per year. Whereas, the polycrystalline solar cells’ degradation rate is around 0.7% to 0.8% per year.