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Solar Panel Efficiency and Ranking PV Modules

solar-basics-gtgt zero-down-solar incentives-gtgt financing-gtgt

Photovoltaic research and design over the past 18 months has resulted in historic advances in efficiency and technology.  During the years 2007-2011, research labs made strong headway in the race to improve solar panel efficiency.  The solar industry’s challenge has always been to develop the smallest, most efficient and least expensive device possible.  It’s the same concept that was employed successfully by the computer industry.   

As we move into 2013, solar panels have reached an average efficiency of around 15-17percent.  This is a strong improvement over past efficiencies existing just three years ago, and is the result of millions of dollars and countless hours of research and development.  Solar panel manufacturers have recently been pulling back on research and development.  They are now concerned with selling their existing designs, which are now at extremely affordable prices.  The market does not anticipate any significant increases in efficiencies for many years to come.

Consumers interested in photovoltaic solar installation have been at a disadvantage as PV cells have not been easy to compare to each other.  Because they are a relatively new technology, cells are often sold based on productivity or longevity and it has been nearly impossible to rate or rank solar panels across the spectrum. 

The Principal Solar Institute (PSI), a publicly traded company aimed at providing cutting edge information to the solar industry, has developed a universal rating PV module rating system.

“Until now, there was no accepted standard for comparing the critical characteristics of PV modules between different manufacturers, or even across a single product line,” says Matthew A. Thompson, Ph.D., executive director of the Principal Solar Institute. “The PSI Ratings elevate the solar industry in a rigorous approach similar to the financial sector, which turns to Standard and Poor’s Ratings for investments, and the air conditioning industry, which relies upon SEER Ratings. We are closing the gap in the solar power industry’s urgent need for a method to uniformly evaluate PV modules in order to make technologically and financially optimal decisions.”

Per their website, the rating system is rigorous and looks at the following attributes:

  • Actual Tested Maximum Power vs. Advertised

  • Temperature Coefficient at Maximum Power

  • Power at Low Irradiance to Power at High Irradiance Ratio

  • Normal Operating Cell Temperature (NOCT)

  • Total Area Efficiency

  • Negative Power Tolerance

  • Annual Power Reduction

So what are the results?  Here is a very comprehensive list of PV modules and how they compare to each other. Go take a look and see what modules will work well for you and then give us a call so we can discuss putting a system on your roof.



solar-basics-gtgt zero-down-solar incentives-gtgt financing-gtgt


More and more areas in the world have used the solar energy for their farmland, hometown, and drinking water questions. Of course besides the making family producing electric itself, there have more and more questions need it to solve, just like animals drinking water ,desert control, fountain questions and agriculture irrigation. which is helpful to them, is name solar pumping system, or solartech solar pump system. which is sold by in China.and here is the website:  
of course here will be publish the project website online:
Posted @ Monday, March 04, 2013 1:24 AM by solartech company
Solartech solar pumps system used the solar energy to the more areas in the world. and now more and more solar energy is widely used by people all over the world. here is the website:
Posted @ Monday, March 04, 2013 1:27 AM by solartech conmapny
The original Ratings page only included the to 10% of PV modules. There is a new page that shows several hundred manufacturers' Ratings!
Posted @ Sunday, March 09, 2014 11:26 AM by Matthew Thompson
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Posted @ Wednesday, March 25, 2015 2:11 AM by juliecarrol
Photo voltaic research and design is a very interesting field to pursue. The developments in technology have taken this field to a new level. With immense knowledge available over the internet, i am positive that we are going to achieve great results in a few years.
Posted @ Thursday, April 02, 2015 12:15 PM by online universities in dubai
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