Electricity Energy Efficiency Solar Panels

How Much Power Does a Solar Panel Produce?

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“How do solar panels actually work?” This question is asked many times here at Solar Fuse. Well we can answer this question with also telling your how much power is used, per square foot. This question is not a hard question to answer. The main determination is really figuring out what size solar panel system a homeowner needs and what they want. To understand how much solar power is produced per square foot it’s helpful to know what solar panels are made of.

 

How Solar Panels Are Made

Think of it as a math problem with the equation being: If a solar panel is rated to produce 360 watts, and it’s about 3-and- ¼-feet wide by 5-and- ½- feet long, then each square foot must produce about 20 watts, but this is not necessarily correct.

 

Temperature: Temperature has a lot to do with heat. If there’s too much heat, your solar panels may not work as effectively. Once the heat increases to higher than 77 degrees Fahrenheit, then the power is will decrease. The best panels have a low “temperature coefficient”, so the hot temperatures are minimized and won’t affect the energy saving process.

 

Spectrum: Rainy and cloudy days can also affect your solar panels. Contrary to what most think, solar panels work during cloudy or rainy days. The reason for this is because there is still a wide spectrum of light that is being received by the panels. Although clouds block some light, it never fully block all of sunlight or the spectrum. This is the reason that it is still possible to get sunburned during rainy or cloudy days.

 

Angle: Depending on the angles and direction that your home is facing, this will determine the energy you are saving and how the solar panels are working as well. Most solar panels are built with “anti-reflective glass,” which means once light enters the panel it will reflect back into the solar cell to hold as much power as possible.

 

Amount of light: Typical solar absorption is at its peak around noon, but this also depends on the location. Shadows from trees, dust, leaves and other factors can block light, affecting solar panel power output. Shading can not only hurt power production, but it can also damage solar panels over time.

Energy Efficiency

The Different Factors That Affect Solar Panel Efficiency

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Solar panel efficiency depends on several factors. For one, it’s the percentage of solar energy or even the sunlight that a panel can convert into usable energy and electricity. The higher levels of efficiency, the more usable electricity produced by the same number of panels. These are the important tangibles that you need to know in order to choose the best solar panel for your home.

There are many factors that can affect panel efficiency. Here are some of the most important factors below:

Different Factors for Solar Panel Efficiency:

  • Temperature Control: Panels need solar energy (sunlight) to produce usable electricity, on the contrary to what most think, solar panels are the most efficient at the lowest of temperatures. Panels designed with materials to reduce the impacts of higher temperatures usually have higher efficiencies.
  • Low Reflective Design: Minimizing the reflection of regular light off of a cell’s surface can also create more efficiency. By reducing reflection with regular light, a cell can successfully capture and transform more solar energy into electricity.
  • Low Recombination: Electric current within solar cells typically flow through charge carriers within panels. Generally speaking, there are 2 main forms of recombination, which are; indirect and direct.

 

How to Know What’s the Best Solar Panel for You

Solar energy efficiency is important, but it isn’t everything. Here are a few quick tips for choosing the right solar panel for your home solar project:

  1. Do your research on different kinds of panels to determine what is best for your home.
  2. Examine your roof. Look at the type of roof you have, the size, and the angle so you can determine what you need.
  3. Obtain multiple solar panel quotes. Sometimes the solar panels that you want may cost more with a different solar provider or company.