Solar power is one of the fastest-growing sources of new energy worldwide, with technology in the solar industry continuing to evolve. The latest technology on that mainstream path is Half-Cut Cell solar panels, which has an anticipated growth in market share from 5% in 2018 to nearly 40% in 2028 (source: The ninth edition of the International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaic).
Half-Cut Cell solar panels, or you can refer to as dual cells, split cells or low internal resistance panels, are solar panels that have their solar cells cut in half, thus halving the internal current of the panel. This results in improving the panel's performance, shade tolerance and durability. I.e. generating more energy with the same panel size and cost, while lasting longer.
What are Half-Cut Cell solar panels?
Half-Cut Cell solar panels are panels with traditional solar cells that have been cut in half by a laser. Take the traditional 60-cell solar panel as an example. With the traditional technology, 60 full-size cells wired up in 3 strings, and operates as a 30V panel, while for a half-cut solar panel, the same panel size has 120 half size cells wired up in 6 strings, and operates as two 30V halves in parallel.
Wiring scheme for a traditional solar panel. There are three separate “rows” of cells wired together in parallel. Source: www.solarquotes.com.au
Wiring scheme for a solar panel made with half-cut cells. There are six separate “rows” of cells wired together in parallel. Source: www.solarquotes.com.au
What are the benefits of Half-Cut Cell solar panels?
The advantages of half-cut technology mainly come from the halving of the internal current of the panel. This results in many benefits, like better performance, benefits under shading and better durability:
1. Lower resistive losses
In a solar panel, resistive power losses occur when electrical current transports through the cell interconnections. By cutting solar cells in half, the current is halved. The reduction current leads to lower resistive losses. This improvement in performance can increase the output of a panel by up to 2.5% over what it would be with full-size cells, which could be a good 9~10W per panel.
2. Higher shade tolerance
Half-cut solar panels are more resistant to the effects of partial shade on the panel. Instead of having 3-panel cell-strings in traditional solar panels, 6 strings are used to connect the cells in a half-cut solar panel. When there is a partial shade on a panel, caused by say leaves, branches or even bird poop, the shaded area will only affect a sixth of the total panel power output, instead of one-third of the output.
3. Better durability
Half-cut solar panels have multiple benefits in extending panel durability. Firstly, smaller cells reduce the stress on cell interconnection expansion and contraction as the panel heats and cools each day. And as smaller cells flex less, there is a decreased opportunity for cracking. Also, half-cut panels reduce the hot spot temperature, thus lower the risk of damaging the panel.
The introduction of newly arrived LONGi 315W PERC Half-Cut Cell Solar Panel
At present, half-cut cell solar panels have become a highlight in the development of PV module technology. Our partner LONGi Solar, is one of the world's leading manufacturers with the technology and facilities to produce half-cut cell solar panels. We are happy to announce that, in the new financial year starting 1st April 2019, we will have the LONGi 315W PERC Half-Cut Cell solar panel as our standard panel option. This brings higher performance, better durability and more cost-effective solar panel option to New Zealand.
To celebrate this exciting news, we will have a three-week promotion on solar systems with LONGi 315W PERC Half-Cut Cell solar panels, please click here for details. As stocks are limited, we suggest you take action by filling in the form below to register your interest now!