3 Reasons Why The Cost Of Solar Panels Will Reduce

 

Not only has solar power been dubbed the cheapest energy source in the world, a new study has also found that three key solar innovations made in the last few years will continue to drop the cost of solar panels.

solar panel innovations that will lower the cost of solarThe research from the Solar PV Module Technology Market Report 2020, listed these three solar technologies as the key elements in lowering solar costs as they improve module efficiency and power class.

  • N-type cells.
  • Large Solar Wafers.
  • Module-level techniques.

1. N-Type Solar PV Cells

As explained in our recent blog on How Solar Panels Are Made , p-type solar cells use Boron to electrically charge them.

In comparison, N-type solar cells predominately utilise phosphorus which means they are immune to boron-oxygen defects that cause decreased efficiency- which is common in p-type solar cells.

The utilisation of N-type solar cells also means a significant drop in production costs, making solar panels cheaper for the consumer.

2. Large Solar Wafers

By developing larger silicon wafers in an M6, M10 and G16 format, utility-scale solar can increase production rates by 3%-9%.

This could mean the manufacturing of 28GW, 59GW and 63GW modules by the end of 2021 and a significant increase in readily available commercial solar PV.

cost of solar- solar innovations3. Module-Level Techniques

New solar module designs such as the “checkerboard” have been found to absorb sunlight by an extra 125% than current solar panel designs.

The solar cell checkerboard design also reduces the thickness of solar modules so that the panel can be placed in more spaces than ever before.

As explained by Dr. Xiaojing Sun, “Module technology innovations, in addition to hardware cost reduction, will be the quintessential driving force that propels the continuous reduction of solar LCOE (levelised cost of energy) in the new decade.”

What Does This Mean For Solar?

So, what do these three new innovations in the solar industry mean for the future of solar?

  • Cheaper cost of solar panels for both residential and commercial designs.
  • More efficient and longer-lasting solar panels.
  • A thinner and more flexible design that allows solar to be implemented in more places than ever before.

How You Can Get Budget Friendly Solar Panels

Interested in how you can use solar to power your home? The best way to get solar panels that suit your needs is to compare solar quotes from local installers in your area.

Solar Market connects you with 3 complimentary quotes from CEC accredited installers so that you know you are getting the best deal from the most reputable installers.

Request 3 Complimentary Solar Quotes

 

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Understanding Batteries

Off-Grid Systems

For some households a battery system can be of great benefit and minimise a home’s reliance on the grid. However, it’s important to understand for a battery to be useful your solar system needs to be generating excess energy for the battery to store, which you can then use at night or when the sun is not out.

When selecting a battery, you’ll want to invest in a system that is most suited to your home and can drive the best return on investment (ROI). Despite a larger upfront cost, a higher quality battery may significantly increase your ROI.

    Battery systems start from $6,000 and costs can vary greatly based on the following factors:

  1. Cycle Life-Time

    The number of times a battery can fully charge and discharge.

  2. Battery Power (kW)

    How fast it can be charged or discharged.

  3. Storage Capacity (kWh)

    The maximum amount of energy a battery system can store.

  4. Battery Management System (BMS)

    An electronic ‘smart’ system that gathers data and manages the battery ensuring it does not overload or operate outside of its safe functioning zone..

  5. Inverter

    Battery systems require their own inverter if your solar system does not have a hybrid inverter.

  6. 'All-In-One Unit’

    A system which includes the battery, BMS and an inverter all in one unit.

  7. Warranty

    Length of time or cycles the battery system is under guarantee.

  8. Blackout Protection/Backup

    It’s important to note this is not a common feature of a battery system and could cost thousands of dollars to include. Blackout protection not only requires additional components but also a specialised installation and rewiring. For grid-connected homes, the cost for blackout protection can outweigh the benefit.

Additionally, if your purpose for adding battery is to go Off-Grid and become completely independent from the grid you will need to ensure your solar system can generate enough energy to power your home and your battery system is large enough to store this energy. For homes in metro areas going Off-grid is not cost effective and is only recommended for those in remote areas with limited access to the grid. Off-grid solar systems with battery start at approximately $30,000.
 

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