Solar Panels, Efficiency and Cost

A solar panels output, also known as a PV module ranges between 100 to 320 watts. The latest average efficiency of silicone solar panels today range from about 10% to 20% based on the environment.

How do Solar Panels Work?

The solar panel works because of photovoltaic effect, I won’t go to deep into the science of this, but this is simply the workings behind a material which has the ability to turn photons released from the sun, into electricity that we can use, this discovery was first observed by Edmond Becquerel in 1839.

This discovery was of course a major science breakthrough as this opens doors to new energy sources which require very little maintenance and is a lot cleaner than conventional energy production methods used today.

Efficiency of Solar Panels

The biggest problem faced was with the solar panel, was that it was not nearly efficient enough to be used as a main source of energy. Today solar panels only produce on average 100 to 320 watts per day and in contrast, the average household consumes about 16kw per day. As you can see, solar panels are not yet efficient enough to replace conventional sources of energy.

However, as time passes solar panels become more and more efficient. When solar panels were first invented, they had a measly efficiency of only about 2% to 3%, today that number has been raised to 20%. It is only a matter of time before solar panels will become efficient enough to have more dramatic effect on daily energy consumption.

Production of Solar Panels

The production of solar panels has slowly increased as they have become more efficient. The Swanson’s Law, which was named after Richard Swanson (Sunpower Corp.), states that for every 20% drop in solar panel price, production doubles. This is because solar panels become more accessible to the public; therefore companies take advantage of the growing market. Today Yingee from China (Green Energy Holding Company Ltd.) is the leading company for the production of silicone solar panels.