REC Solar pioneered half-cut solar cells in 2014 and was designed to increase the solar panel output. In this article, we will learn more about how they work below, but you can think of a half-cut cell as two separate panels in one.
We will explain how half-cut solar panels work, why their design improves standard solar panels performance, which manufacturers use them, and the potential future of half-cut solar cell technology.
How do half-cut solar panels work?
Half-cut solar cell technology increases the solar panel output by reducing the size of the cells, so more cells can fit on the solar panel. Then the panel is split in half, so the top partition operates independently of the bottom one, reducing the risk of low output even when the panel half is shaded.
Traditional monocrystalline solar panels normally have 60 to 72 solar cells, so when these cells are cut in half, the number of cells increases. Half-cut solar panels have 120 to 144 solar cells and are normally made with PERC technology, which provides higher solar panel efficiency. Since the solar cells are cut in half and are thereby reduced in size, monocrystalline solar panels have more solar cells on the panel than the traditional panels do.
In a traditional solar panel, when one cell is shaded or faulty and doesn’t produce power, the whole row within the series wiring will stop generating energy.
With the traditional full cell string series wiring, if a solar cell in any single row does not have enough sunlight, every cell within that series will not produce power. This knocks out almost a third of the output of the panel.
For half-cut solar panels, if a solar cell in any one row is shaded, the cells within only that row will stop producing energy. Other rows will continue to produce energy, generating more power than a traditional series wiring because only one-sixth of the solar panel has stopped producing energy instead of one-third.
What are some great benefits of half-cut cells?
There are numerous advantages of half-cut cell panels. They enhance solar panel output and solar panel efficiency because they provide a higher shade tolerance due to their distinctive wiring system. This means if your house has some trees that cast shade onto your roof at certain times throughout the day, your whole solar panel won’t be unusable like it would happen with a traditional solar panel and you would still get good solar panel output.
Additionally, the effects of hot spots are much less severe on your solar panels with half-cut cells. Hot spots shift excess heat on a panel, say from a very hot part to the shaded, cooler section. With a half-cut cell, hot spots won’t be as damaging because there are more cells to spread the excess heat.
Though half-cut cells provide many advantages, they are costlier because they are more challenging to manufacture, with increased soldering steps and laser cutting. In the end, it’s up to you to decide if the overall advantages make the increased cost worth it. At AYKA Solar, you can be assured of the top-quality brands, latest solar technology at the best prices.
Which manufacturers use half-cut solar cell modules?
Ever since REC Solar pioneered half-cut solar cell technology, many solar companies have followed suit. Some well-known manufacturers are Trina Solar, Q CELLS, Jinko Solar, and LONGi Solar panels.
If you’re thinking about half-cut solar panels, work with your solar installer to find the best option for your specific roof’s solar panel installation. Whichever option you select, traditional versus half-cut, going with a reputable manufacturer and trustworthy solar installer is the best choice.
Thinking about installing half-cut solar panels in future?
Usually, traditional solar panels can be just right for you, in case your roof has ample sunlight all through the day.
However, if you need every ounce of power you can get because you stay in a shady area or you need to maximize your net metering benefits, half-cut cells would be a great option. Ask for half-cut solar panels if you have a small surface area that needs to generate all of the solar energy it could. Otherwise, you should be fine with traditional solar panels, even if you might need a couple more of them on your roof.
Your solar installer will make it easier to decide if half-cut cells are the right choice for your rooftop solar array.
The professional team at AYKA Solar is dedicated to providing superior-quality solar energy systems for customers all over Australia. To learn more about how solar panel systems can benefit you, contact us today and get a free quote.