Types of solar cell that are used in solar panels

Types of solar cellIf you’ve decided to install solar cells for your house the next question that may arise is: “Which types of solar cells to choose?” Solar cells are fairly new on the market and majority of people are not that familiar with the different types of solar cells that exist, and even though, if they have heard about them, it is quite troublesome to make out what are their differences, and, what is far more important, what is the best quality-features and price ratio of the solar cells present on the market.

As we already know that solar cells are special electric devices that can convert light energy (sunlight) into electricity by the means of photonic effect. The speed, efficiency and overall level of operability of the conversion of this energy depend on the material from which the solar cell is created.

Therefore different solar cell material will dictate different features of the device. However, silicon still remains the most popular and widely used material for solar cells. According to it solar cells can be divided into three (or four) main types. These are:

Monocrystalline (single crystal) silicon solar cellsalready from its name we can realize that this type of solar cells is cut from a single crystal (cylindrical ingots) of silicon. These are difficult to produce, and in appearance you will notice a smooth and plain texture. These types of solar cells are most efficient and, consequently, very expensive.

Polycrystalline (multicrystalline) silicon solar cellsthese solar cells are cut from a large number of crystals of silicon, which create a whole block of silicon. In their appearance, you may notice heterogeneous texture. This type of solar cells are a little less efficient, in comparison with monocrystalline ones, and less expensive. Also, this type of solar cells is widely accepted as a standard on the market of solar panels.

Ribbon silicon solar cells – mainly, ribbon silicon is a type of polycrystalline silicon, as it is created by drawing very thin films (ribbons) from melted silicon. This type of solar cells is less efficient than the ones given above, but it is very cost efficient, since its production is very cost-saving, as the silicon waste is greatly reduced.

Amorphous solar cells – these solar cells are manufactured from non-crystalline silicone, by the process of placing a thin-film of amorphous on a special surface. These types of solar cells are the least efficient, and therefore they do not cost so much as the other solar cells. Its other distinctive feature is flexibility (that is very important for portable solar cells). Due to its amorphous nature and if the surface on which the film is placed is flexible (in comparison to the previous types which are not flexible), the solar cell can take on this great feature. However, one of the adverse features of amorphous solar cells is that its efficiency reduces with time. During first few months their power output will be falling, and after that time it is basically stable.

Majorly when choosing solar panels for home it is recommended to use polycrystalline silicon solar cells.

Also there are exist polymer solar cells. These solar sells are very innovative and has big future. They are about three times cheaper than silicon solar cells and easily disposable that is very attractive for home use.

Also keep in mind that types of solar panels can be different according to its size in Watts. The features of solar cell size in Watts relates to its efficiency of output. If to look at the particular example a 100 Watt monocrystalline silicon solar cell will produce 100 Watt of electricity in an hour period of time. Therefore, 200 Watt solar cell will therefore produce 200 Watts of electricity in an hour. However, it is worth to notice that the output of cell will also depend on the physical size of the panel. Therefore 200 Watt amorphous solar cell will be around two-times bigger than 100 Watt amorphous solar cell.

Save article: