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Half Cell Solar Panels: More Power, Better Shade Tolerance

George Riley 11 Dec 2019

The solar manufacturing industry is devoted to trends - from bifacial to PERC - always seeking ways to maximise energy generation. One technology that’s seen a meteoric rise in the last few years is half cell solar panels (or half cut solar cells), on track to become near ubiquitous across PV modules.

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Topics: Solar PV

Tier 1 Solar Panels: Are They Worth It?

George Riley 04 Dec 2019

When researching solar PV, you may have come across the phrase ‘tier 1 solar panels’. It’s used as a selling point by some manufacturers and installers to demonstrate the reliability of their products. But is that really the case?

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Topics: Solar PV

Introducing Solar Together London

George Riley 27 Nov 2019

We are very excited to announce that we’ve been chosen as one of two installers for Solar Together’s current round of PV installations in London. Solar Together is a group-buying scheme, enabling thousands of people to sign up for a personal solar recommendation, which they can purchase at a very competitive price.

Our vision since we started the company almost a decade ago has been of a country where every homeowner can generate their own clean, renewable energy. Technology and costs have changed enormously in that time, but a project like this goes even further towards making solar an option for many more people. We’re delighted to be part of this journey.

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Topics: Solar PV

SolarEdge vs Micro-inverters

George Riley 17 Oct 2019

In a perfect world, UK roofs would all face south, with a 35° pitch and no shading in sight. But we don’t live in a perfect world. As solar installers, we have to find clever ways to maximise the potential power from roofs of all make ups, orientations and shaded spots.

This is best achieved by using micro-inverters or power optimisers - nifty bits of kit, collectively known as Module-Level Power Electronics (MLPEs). As that name implies, these bring a degree of power optimisation at the module level (i.e. at the level of each individual solar panel). This means you can get the most from panels under different levels of sunlight (facing varying directions or affected by shading, dirt etc).

But which is the best solution? Let’s focus on our favourite brand of power optimiser, and compare SolarEdge vs micro-inverters.

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Topics: Solar PV

Viridian Solar Panels and the Benefits of In Roof PV

George Riley 20 Sep 2019

While solar panels are traditionally retrofitted to an existing rooftop, it’s becoming more common (especially in newbuilds) to integrate the panels into the roof itself. With in roof PV, you end up with a sleeker, more attractive result.

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Topics: In roof solar panels, Solar PV

PERC Solar Cells: When Are They Worth It?

George Riley 15 Aug 2019

What is a PERC cell?

PERC solar cells are a variation on the traditional cells used in solar panels that offer enhanced efficiency. The acronym PERC stands for Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact or Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell. Over the last few years they have become more and more popular, to the point where they now make up over 40% of the solar technology market and are expected to dominate by 2021, according to the ITRPV.

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Topics: Solar PV

Solar Panel Orientation

David Woon 02 Aug 2019

Solar panel orientation is a key determining factor in the output of a solar PV system, as it dictates how much sunshine the panels will see over the course of the day. The more sunshine they see the higher the output. In the UK the optimum orientation for a high generation is to face the panels due south. However; what happens if the panels face off south or even directly east or west? 

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Topics: Solar PV

Solar Panel Specifications: Reading a Solar Panel Datasheet

Erica Charles 25 Jul 2019

Solar panel key parameters

If you are trying to compare one PV panel to another, it is helpful to understand the key technical parameters - or solar panel specifications - that impact performance.

With this in mind, we’ve taken some extracts from the specification sheet for a standard polycrystalline solar panel (Trina Solar’s HoneyM Plus+ 265-275W range) and highlighted the key parameters.

We’ve then highlighted key differences between the Trina panel and SunPower’s Maxeon® 3 panel.

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Topics: Solar PV

Bifacial Solar Panels and the Albedo Effect

Erica Charles 01 Jul 2019

One of the most notable trends in the solar PV market in the last couple of years has been the growth in bifacial solar panels.

The 2019 International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaics (ITRPV) predicts that bifacial cells will increase their share of the solar PV market from around 15% in 2019 to 60% in 2029.

So, time to sit up and take notice. What are bifacial PV modules, and why are they set to dominate the market over the next 10 years?

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Topics: Solar PV

The Current State of Solar Energy: Taking Stock of the PV Market

Erica Charles 05 Jun 2019

When you work at the coal face of the solar industry (get your head 🙃 around that one), it is sometimes interesting to take a step back to see where the market has come from and where it’s headed.

We’ve spent some time taking stock of the solar PV market. Here’s a summary…

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Topics: Solar PV

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