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On Thurs, 28 Aug 2014 the federal govt released long-awaited recommendations from the Renewable Energy Target (RET) Review that will either abolish the upfront federal subsidy for solar energy, or severely slash it, for systems up to 100kW.

An announcement from the Govt as to which option it will choose is imminent. Contracts entered into prior to any announcement will protect your subsidy.

How can I generate an online contract immediately to protect the subsidy?

1. Simply complete the green form on this page to obtain your impartial Quote Comparison of leading installers covering your area.

2. Select three installers that best suit your needs and budget to reveal their names and logos, then select your prefered installer by clicking "View and Accept Quote".

3. Follow instructions on deposit payment options, following which you will be emailed a PDF of your Accepted Quote (as will your selected installer who'll contact you, and Solar Choice).

Your subsidy will then very likely be protected under transitional provisions recommended by the RET Review.

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Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline Solar Panels: Busting Myths

by James Martin II on March 27, 2012

in Solar Panels/Modules,Solar System Products

One of the most common comments that the Solar Choice Energy Brokering team hear from our customers relates to the issue of monocrystalline vs polycrystalline (or ‘multicrystalline’) solar panels. Although monocrystalline panels had the initial advantage of being seen as the superior technology in the Australian market, as time goes on and both technologies improve, it becomes increasingly apparent that the the quality and reliability of the manufacturer is far more important than which of the two technologies is chosen.

What’s the difference? Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline solar panels

Sun-Earth Solar Panels 175W-80W-185w-190w

Sun-Earth Solar Panels using monocrystalline cells

The typical monocrystalline solar cell is a dark black colour, and the corners of cells are usually missing as a result of the production process and the physical nature of monocrystalline silicon. Polycrystalline, on the other hand, is identifieable by its signature light or dark blue colour, but not uniformly so: some patches are lighter than others. The differences in appearance come about as a result of the manufacturing process. (Read more: The manufacturing and science behind solar cells.)

Tindo solar panels Adelaide first installation 2

Tindo Solar Panels using polycrystalline cells

When solar PV first boomed in Australia in 2009-2010, monocrystalline solar panels were thought to be superior to polycrystalline solar panels. There were a number of reasons for this thinking. Monocrystalline solar cells have historically had a higher peak efficiency, and were more readily available than polysilicon solar cells. The blanket statement that monocrystalline panels are better than polycrystalline cells, however, is not accurate. Each panel and its manufacturer should be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Some comparisons and examples

It is not difficult to find examples that illustrate the above points. The below comparisons are not intended to imply that one panel brand is of higher quality than another, but simply to show that some polycrystalline solar modules are more efficient than monocrystalline ones.

First, to compare mid-range products of comparable quality and price, GermanSolar brand 60-cell monocrystalline Premium Line panels have a maximum efficiency of about 15.47%, whereas Conergy’s polycrystalline PowerPlus modules have a maximum efficiency of 14.13%. This is not far off from the 14.9% that Sun-Earth’s 190W monocrystalline module boasts.

It is possible to see the same trend in high-end modules as well. For example, premium US manufacturer Sunpower’s monocrystalline panels see peak module efficiencies of up to 20.7% (22.8% efficiency for individual cells), a few percentage points ahead of Suntech’s polycrystalline Pluto technology–certain cells of which were recently confirmed as having hit 20.3% in lab conditions. Although commercially produced modules using Suntech’s Pluto technology will inevitably have lower peak efficiencies than this impressive rate, it still serves to demonstrate that monocrystalline is not an intrinsically better choice than poly.

A note about solar panel efficiency: How important is it for your system?

Remember that, especially for buildings with ample roof space, a panel’s peak efficiency is not the primary consideration for most solar system owners-to-be. Unless there are no budgetary constraints, it is more important to consider the system as a whole, balancing price with quality. In some cases, a high peak efficiency can act as a sales point, and proof that the product is ‘high-tech’ or cutting edge and therefore deserving of a higher price tag. For the budget-conscious, however, the number to look at would be dollar per watt for the entire installed system.

In the end, the cost and performance of your system will depend not only on the panels you use, but also your solar inverter, your installer’s labour costs, and the orientation of your home’s roof and tilt angle of your panels.

Looking beyond the module and its efficiency: The importance of the company behind the product

Although quality technology is important in selection of solar panels, it is also critical to keep in mind that both monocrystalline and polycrystalline silicon solar cells are proven technologies, and one should not automatically be considered better than the other. Manufacturing equipment for silicon wafers is now more readily available now than it ever has been in the past, however, so panels are relatively easy for companies to manufacture. A key differentiating factor between the quality manufacturers and the bottom-line ones is whether the company in question invests in research and development (R&D). R&D investment by a manufacturer is usually indicative of the company’s commitment to creating innovative and quality products, but it also shows that the company is planning to be in the game for the long-term, and is not a fly-by-night operator.

For most households, balancing affordability with reliability is key. Solar power systems are ordinarily expected to continue operating for 30+ years; solar panel warranties generally cover products for up to 25 years. Warranties are will only continue to be serviceable if the manufacturer behind them remains a solvent company. Although it is impossible to know for sure what will happen a quarter century in the future, when selecting a panel, it is still advisable to try to imagine whether the product’s manufacturer is likely to be around at that point in time, just in case something goes wrong in the meantime. Otherwise, if the panels need repairing, the cost could end up being greater than an an initial investment in more reputable product would have been.

(Read more: Questions to ask your solar panel manufacturer.)

© 2012 Solar Choice Pty Ltd

James Martin II

James has been working as analyst and online development manager for Solar Choice since 2011 and has contributed hundreds of articles to the Solar Choice website during this time.

He holds a master's degree in Environmental Management from UNSW, and a bachelor's degree in Philosophy from Bridgewater State University in his native Massachusetts.

He currently works remotely for Solar Choice from New York City.

{ 45 comments… read them below or add one }

Dolf August 23, 2012 at 11:57 am

Hi guys,
If I have understood it correctly monocrystalline is more for a moderate climate and poly is more for hotter climate where the sun shines fearsly.
I have mono panels and on a very hot day their efficiency runs back.
But on cooler days with sun I get full power.
I live in The Netherlands.
Please correct me if I have ik wrong.
See you Dolf.

Reply

admin September 6, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Hi Dolf,

That’s a good point. Generally speaking, polycrystalline silicon panels do perform better in hot conditions, but the differences will depend on the actual manufacturer and product in question–check the specs! That being said, all electronics like cooler conditions, and solar panels are no exception.

Reply

Julie August 26, 2012 at 2:36 pm

Would u be able to tell me what panels r better on a north facing home for a 5kw system in Victoria. I’m looking at Renesolar 250 watt mono crystalline,250 watt perlight monocrystalline & 235 watt Avim polycrystalline solar panels & Fronius or SMA inverters. Not sure wether the mono is better than the poly!! Thanks

Reply

admin September 4, 2012 at 6:37 pm

Hi Julie,

Generally speaking, polycrystalline silicon technology is better in the heat (e.g. midday sun), but you would have to check the individual specs of the products at hand. As far as Fronius or SMA are concerned, they are both reputable companies that offer quality products.

Reply

HK Chaudhary September 3, 2012 at 5:39 pm

Thank you for sharing this post with us, especially for those who are willing to install solar panels in their homes and offices. I think, whichever solar panel you choose or buy, get it from a reputed company. Products of leading solar module manufacturers are always safe and last long. You should only invest in a product when you seem to be satisfied with its features, user-friendly interface and price.

Reply

Michael Roads September 27, 2012 at 3:36 pm

I have some questions. I live in South East Queensland, so it is warm but I have quite a lot of winter shade on my roof owing to my nearby gum trees. My question is whether solar panels will be effective in these conditions for a regular supply of electricity, and what size unit is the most effective way to go? Also what type of solar panels and who is a reliable supplier and fitter on the south east coast?
Thank you for any help you can offer.

Reply

Solar Choice September 28, 2012 at 4:28 pm

Hi Michael,

I think our article ‘Why even partial shading is bad for solar power systems‘ might answer your question relating to shade, essentially any shade will significantly reduce the output of your solar panels so it’s best to avoid. There are solar panels that can deal with this but they are significantly more expensive than the industry standard.

What we’d recommend to answer the rest of your questions is filling in our Solar Quote Comparison located to the right of the page, this will generate a FREE quote for up to 7 installers who operate in your local area. You will also be located a personal Solar Broker who will contact you to talk you through the quote and help you make a decision on the best option for you. Alternatively you can us directly on 1300 78 72 73.

We look forward to helping you with your solar project.

Reply

Paul October 11, 2012 at 12:02 pm

Hi, I would like to see some comparisons of solar arrays on houses and mobile units (RV’s). However, the most important thing for mobile units is how you face the sun! Is this your take on it or should mobile units even be concerned with this? I know that we need a certain a amount or “alignment” to obtain enough Solar Charge.

Is there a panel type that out performs on a mobile location?

Paul

Reply

Solar Choice October 11, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Hi Paul,

The information we provide relates to residential and commercial properties due to the different set up requirements for mobile units. I believe there are panels designed specifically for RV’s which are able to stand up to the stress of the movement and vibration associated with being attached to a moving vehicle. Unfortunately I don’t have any details of where you may be able to get a hold of this type of panel but an internet search should help you find a manufacturer who should be able to answer your question better than myself.

Generally speaking we advise that panels face north and are free from shade is it drastically reduces the effectiveness of the whole panel.

We hope this help.

Reply

Gowtham October 16, 2012 at 8:26 pm

Sir could u send me the efficiency perfromance of polycrystalline over monocrystalline

Reply

Solar Choice October 17, 2012 at 9:36 am

Hi Gowtham,

As the article states there are different efficiencies between different manufacturers as well as between polycrystalline and monocrystalline. If you are looking for a solar PV we would recommend filling in our Solar Quote Comparison, you’ll get a free instant quote for up to 7 installers who operate in your local area, you’ll also have your own dedicated Solar Broker who will be able to impartially walk through the quote with you helping you select the best installer and technology for you needs. If you’d rather talk to us directly please call 1300 78 72 73.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Reply

Geoff Hull October 19, 2012 at 4:22 pm

G’day, I have just signed up for a solar system with Q cell polychrystaline panels rather than the Mono. I have chosen an SMA SunnyBoy inverter to cap them off. Have I made a wise decision. I am north facing –30 degree roof pitch in hot Qld conditions. Cheers, Hully.

Reply

Solar Choice October 24, 2012 at 9:58 am

Hi Hully,

Q Cells are one of the best PV manufacturers in the world and the Sunny Boy also has good reviews. The Polycrystalline vs Monocrystalline debate has been raging for some time but there is no real difference in the performance, the real reason one is now preferred over the other was actually a marketing tactic by some of the newer players on the market.

If you want a second opinion on your quote you can fill in the Solar Quote Comparison for free, you’ll get information for a range of installer who operate in your local area. All the installers on our network have Clean Energy Council certification and use products from trusted manufacturers, if you get out quote and it matches what you’ve been offered you know you have a good deal if not there should be a cool off period where you can cancel or go back and negotiate the price further.

We look forward to helping you soon.

Reply

GOURISH December 9, 2012 at 11:25 pm

can you tell me why monocrystalline solar cells are used in more number than polycrystalline though it is costly than polycrystalline….and why monocrystalline works better in cool condition and polycrystalline in hot….???

Reply

Solar Choice December 10, 2012 at 10:09 am

Hi there,

In Australia monocrystalline panels are much more popular because, when the solar industry took off, new manufacturers advertised monocrystalline cells as ‘new’ technology and said any manufacturer using multi(poly)crystalline cells were using old out of date technology. In reality there is very little in terms of performance.

When it comes to temperature, all PV cells operate best at cooler temperatures with bright sunshine (so first thing on a sunny day before the panels have heated up). If you live in the NT or FNQ (or somewhere with equally harsh climes) it’s worth investing in one of the Premium panels which tend to go through a longer development period and more stringent check to ensure they will last and perform at minimum standards for far longer the a cheaper panel. Some of the Premium manufacturers even offer a performance guarantee in their warrantees.

If you want to get a Quote for a Solar PV System please complete the information in the green box to the right of the screen, alternatively you can call us directly on 1330 78 72 73.

Reply

Ray January 2, 2013 at 11:53 am

Hello,

I was quoted a Growatt 5000MTL inverter with 22 x ECSOLAR 230 watt mono panels and the installer has since said he can’t do the same instal date unless he uses anothe panel. He is offering BYD panels which are 215watt polys x 24. Just wondering if BYD are OK and will there be any real difference between the ECSOLAR and BYD panels. BYD X 34 = 5.16KW and ECSOLAR X 22 = 5.06 KW.
PS I plan on splitting the panels evenly on the East and West side of the roof. No north facing roof.

Reply

Solar Choice January 3, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Hi Ray,

I’m not familiar with BYD panels and wouldn’t like to comment. We undertake the due diligence on behalf of our customers but still advise doing the research before you sign with an installer. There are a lot of manufacturers and installers who have only recently entered the industry, with such a large investment it pays to make sure both the installer and manufacturer are likely to be around a few years down the line.

If you type in the details of the panel and ‘review’ into your search engine you should be able to get further information. As your comment was left after 1 January 2013 you will not receive additional discount from the Solar Credit Scheme (unless you signed with the installer before 16 November 2012 or they are honouring last years price), it may be worth your while waiting for the original stock to arrive and proceeding then.

Sorry we can’t be of more help!

Reply

Chris Levy January 4, 2013 at 10:15 am

Hello
I have a 3.08kw solar system made up of 8 x 190w Suntech monocrystalline panels (initially installed) and then an additional 8 x 195w Suntech monocrystalline panels (added 12 months later). The inverter is a Xantrex GT 2.8 AU with a recommended PV array power of 3.07kw with input for 2 parallel strings. When the installer added the second set of panels he used the original cable (6.0 mm2) for both sets of panels. Was this good practice?
The following are the system performance measurements
Max daily recorded generation 18.7kwh
Average daily generation Oct 2012 15.37kwh, Nov 2012 15.25kwh, Dec 2012 16.06kwh
Best instantaneous power recorded 2853kw
Installation is in QLD just south of Brisbane.
Given these figures, is the generation being acheived acceptable?
What is the best parameter to record to ascertain if there is any fall off in performance or component failure in the system?
Is there any other parameters I shouls be measuring?
Regards
Chris

Reply

Solar Choice January 8, 2013 at 2:56 pm

Hi Chris,

What I believe you’re asking is whether they should have used a bigger cable for the 195 watt panels? For such a small increase it’s fine for you’re installer to have used the same sized cable. I would have expected each set of panels to be placed on a separate string to optimise their output as systems will be only perform as well as the worst panel.

The best you can expect to get from your system is about 90% efficiency, as I mentioned the performance of your panels will decrease over time which will lead to decreased generation. I’m not sure about the older Suntech panels but the new once come with a 25 year performance guarantee so you can expect a certain level of performance over the first 25 years of your systems life. The figures look good to me, but I would advise that you clean the panels every few months and get the system serviced regularly to ensure it’s performing at it’s optimum level.

Hope this helps

Reply

Tom January 11, 2013 at 4:03 am

Can you give some temperature ranges for efficiency conditions? What is considered hot for solar panels. I’m not sure what constitutes hot or cool conditions?

Reply

Solar Choice January 11, 2013 at 5:13 pm

Hi Tom,

The optimum operating temperature for solar panels is around 25 degrees, the ideal conditional a cool bright days as solar becomes less productive as they heat up. Good quality solar panels should be able to cope with a range of temperatures, indeed companies like Suntech expose their panels to quality tests to simulate extreme changes in temperature over a 25 year period and can offer customers a minimum performance warranty over this time.

You can take a look at the information produced by Desert Knowledge, they have information on how selected panels perform and are based near Alice Springs.

Hope this helps.

Reply

Asif January 16, 2013 at 5:47 pm

Hi there,

Can anyone pls give me bit of idea about CSUN 250- 60Polcy an Mono panels + CSUN inverter? Are these good and should I go for Poly or Mono. I leave in NSW and I have north facing roof without any shade. Thanks

Reply

Solar Choice January 17, 2013 at 9:48 am

Hi Asif,

We haven’t come across this manufacturers products as they are not offered by any of the installers on our network. If you want to get some alternative options you can complete our Solar Quote Comparison to the right of the page, that way you’ll know if you’re getting a good deal and can see what other panels are available on the market.

We hope to help you soon

Reply

Asif January 22, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Hi There,
Could you pls give me some perspective between choosing a 3KW SMA inverter vs. 3 KW Sunteams inverter? I am un-sure on investing another AUD$1500 for SMA over Sunteams in the current rebate scenario- which will take multiple more years for me to get the payback with my usage. Thanks Asif

Reply

Solar Choice January 22, 2013 at 5:20 pm

Hi Asif,

This is exactly the kind of question our Solar Brokers can help answer. When you complete a FREE, Solar Quote Comparison you are allocated a solar broker who will help you make an informed decision based on the quote comparison sent out.

You can complete the Quote Comparison form online, it’s located to the right of the screen, or call us on 1300 78 72 73 to speak with a Broker directly.

We look forward to helping you soon.

Reply

Romy C J January 27, 2013 at 7:23 pm

which one is better polycrystalline or monocrystalline panels for average quality(economical) solar systems ? which is prefferd in southern India (KERALA) having an average sunlight?????

Reply

Solar Choice January 29, 2013 at 9:20 am

Hi Romy,

There is no significant difference between monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels. Cost wise mono is slightly more expensive, but they do perform slightly better, with regards to location, again the technology makes no real difference it’s the manufacturer you need to look at. If you want a system that will last and can cope with the elements, one of the Premium manufacturers would be a better option for you, as they tend to spend more testing their panels to the extreme, they also have a history you can look at. Inverter wise, we have yet to be fully convinced by any Chinese designed and manufactured component. There is one that has performed well in the short term but it hasn’t been around long enough to fully prove itself.

Hope this helps

Reply

Balasubramanian February 19, 2013 at 5:10 am

I want to installed 2 x 200 W solar panels in Coimbatore, India, where the summer temperatures can be as high as 38 to 42 degrees Centigrade. One supplier says I should go for monocrystalline panels, as 400 W monocrystalline is equivalent to 480 W polycrystalline, and that mono will start generating power even from diffuse light.
The seller of polycrystalline says, monocrystalline is meant for cold countries like germany, and in hot countries, polycrystalline is better.
Monocrystalline is costlier in India, as the suppliers claim, it is being imported from Germany. Polycrystalline is assembled in India.
Can you help me out of this confusion, especiallly, the suitability of monocrystalline in hot climate. I have noticed that mono charges the battery even before full sunlight falls on the panel (around 7 am) whereas poly starts after full sunlight
Please help me choose.

Reply

Solar Choice February 20, 2013 at 9:57 am

Hi,

A good quality panel should be able to stand up to high temperatures whether it’s monocrystalline or polycrystalline.The mono panels may start charging the battery sooner as they are slightly better are capturing the light due to the way the cells are produced. Today’s polycrystalline panels are very efficient, and the difference in performance between mono and poly is small, although mono does perform slightly better. As long as you’re going with a reputable manufacturer then you should have no problems and both sets of panels will do the job.

The decision should be based on getting the best system for you money, use a reputable manufacturer for both the panels and inverter. At the moment European made inverters are the most reliable option, there is one Chinese manufacturer whose inverter does seem to rival the European models but has not been around long enough to really prove itself.

Hope this helps you make a choice!

Reply

David Raj February 24, 2013 at 11:20 pm

Hi
I live in SE Qld and I’m looking at installing a 5kW system with an SMA 5000TL inverter. I’m having difficulty choosing between LG 280 W, REC 250 W and Bosch 240 W panels. The cost difference is not an issue. Can you help me choose please?
Thanks
David.

Reply

Solar Choice February 25, 2013 at 11:38 am

Hi David,

I’m afraid I can’t tell you want to do! They are all great panels you won’t go wrong with an of them. Sometimes when you have a situation like this either cost or the reputation of the installer is sometimes the best option. Alternatively you might want to check what country the product warranty is held in, if something does go wrong you may want to talk to someone within Australia rather than abroad.

Hope that helps you make a choice.

Reply

Simon Rigby March 1, 2013 at 1:02 am

Hi

I have Been quoted on a 3kw Eversolar 3000TL
With 12 Polycrystalline, multi diode panels. Meant to be brand new tech and is verified by there german parent company M+W GROUP. off true value solar For $3500 AUD

The panels are going to be either from SERAPHIM SOLAR SYSTEM Co.
Or renesola. A few people have said that if these panels where mono
It would be the deal of the year. Is the price to good to be true ?? I live in Perth Western Australia

Thanks

Reply

Solar Choice March 6, 2013 at 6:59 am

Hi Simon,

Thanks for the comment.

$3500 for a 3KW solar system is indeed a good deal if it’s for real. Make sure that the warranties all check out all right, though.

Eversolar, Renesola and Seraphim make regular appearances on our Solar Quote Comparisons–they are popular, cost-effective options. Have you shopped around much? If you haven’t done so already, it might be a good idea to put your details into the form to the right of this page so we can send you a free comparison of the installer offerings Solar Choice has for your area of Perth. Having a chat with our staff is also cost- and obligation-free.

Reply

peter m March 5, 2013 at 3:11 pm

Hi, i am looking into getting solar panels on my roof, I am supplied by AGL and they have given me a quote using mono panels 6 x 250 watt panels (EE250Rand a 1 x Eko Energy 1500S inverter, I have also talked to another company who have told me the trina delta honey panels are the best as I live in the blue mountains where the weather can be extreme , very cold in winter, cloudy and some days we get fog/mist that can last all day, so he said the mono is not good for my area as mono only revieves the suns rays from one direction and the trina delta accepts the rays from many directiona making it much more efficient. he also said they install a cheaper brand called Jinko. I really would like to get the job done by AGL as they have been around for 125 years and also supply my slectricity and gas. Can yo tell me which way I should go. i think i will need a 2.5kW system so as it almost makes me energy self sufficient.

Reply

Solar Choice March 6, 2013 at 6:45 am

Hi Peter,

The Trina Delta Honey panels are indeed a quality product, but it’s important to make sure that you’re getting the best deal possible on the whole system.

We can show you a wider array of options available in your area than the 2 you’ve mentioned–in a format that is easy to understand and facilitates making straightforward comparisons. There’s even a chance that one of the installers that we work with can beat the price you’ve been quoted with comparable or the same components.

I don’t know what sort of prices you’re looking at, but by filling out the Quote Comparison Form to the right of this page you will receive an instant comparison of up to 7 installers, with prices and components clearly laid out for you. One of our staff will be happy to follow up and answer any questions that you have about your project. If you go through Solar Choice you’re guaranteed a better price than going to that installer directly.

You can also call us up directly on 1300 78 72 73.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Reply

Don March 6, 2013 at 3:03 am

Any comments and advice comparing Sharp to Sunpower and Motech.

The panels I am considering are

Sharp ND240QCJ, Sunpower SPR-225E-Blk-d, and Motech Americas IM60-250.

I have several bid proposals using these panels with Endphase 215 inverters, and am very confused about what direction to go in.

Reply

Solar Choice March 6, 2013 at 6:32 am

Hi Don,

Thanks for the comment.

Sunpower and Sharp are generally considered ‘premium’ products with strong brands, while Motech is more generic.

We’re happy to speak to you more and clarify for you the differences between inverter options–Enphase makes microinverters, which are different from conventional inverters in that they’re installed on a 1 or 2-per panel basis as opposed to having just 1 central inverter.

Feel free to get in touch with us by filling out the form to the right of this page or calling us on 1300 78 72 73. Our services are completely free to our customers.

Reply

Russell Hartley March 19, 2013 at 10:25 pm

Hi there, ive been doing quiet a bit of reading on solar panels and although more enlightened i now fear I am also more confused. as you have said in previous posts it seems to come down to the value for money scenario. I have now narrowed it down to an aurora inverter but cant decide between panels which are suntech and perlight both are for the same price. I was leaning toward suntech as you hear about them a lot but then perlight have been around for 30 years so they must be doing something right. Which do you favour ?please please…thanks…Russ

Reply

Solar Choice March 20, 2013 at 5:05 am

Hi Russell.

Thanks for the comment. I see that you’ve come onto our website and requested a quote comparison as well. One of our brokers would be happy to speak with you to about the pros and cons of each of the manufacturers you’ve mentioned.

Suntech’s recent troubles are indeed worrying, and although the technology is generally considered to be of good quality, the servicing of warranties on their products into the future could prove to be a deterrent for those considering using their products.

Reply

Joe Egan April 17, 2013 at 12:06 am

I have enjoyed reading all of the Q & A regarding PV installations and as I live in Ireland where conditions are very different to those in Aus.I
wonder if you could reccomend the most suitable equipment for this location Joe

Reply

Solar Choice April 18, 2013 at 5:59 am

Hi Joe,

Solar panels have seen massive success in the UK, where weather conditions are largely similar to those of Ireland, as I’ve been led to believe. Most standard crystalline silicon solar panel technologies should work just fine, although thin-film panels are said to be better in diffuse lighting conditions (e.g. where it’s cloudy a lot of the time).

A local installer there would have a better idea of what would be most appropriate. Have you contacted any?

Reply

hamza April 19, 2013 at 6:40 pm

Hi,

Can u plz tell me these solar panels work on light or by heat?

Reply

Solar Choice April 23, 2013 at 10:22 am

Hi Hamza,

All the solar panels discussed in this article convert sunlight into electricity. Heat actually diminishes their potential output.

Reply

Robster May 4, 2013 at 10:18 pm

Hi There,

I live in the south of France and want to convert my house to solar power. I am not great at internet searching and was wondering if you could advise me on the process? I believe I consume about 32kwh per day.
What do I need with respect to battery bank, panels and installation? Also, can you recommend anyone in this area for installation?

Reply

Solar Choice June 27, 2013 at 7:20 am

Hi Robster,

Unfortunately we don’t know anyone who does solar in France, although we do have an office in the UK, where we operate under the name of Solar Selections.

Just a couple of notes for you: Most solar systems these days are grid-connect systems, which means that they don’t have or need battery packs. If you’re in a remote area, you might indeed be looking for a system with a battery bank, but these sorts of ‘off-grid’ systems are relatively uncommon–and more expensive.

France does have a solar feed-in tariff (which pays grid connected solar system owners for all or a portion of the power that their systems produce), but I am not across the details. What I do know is that this incentive, combined with falling solar installation prices, has resulted in rapid uptake of grid-connect solar systems there. This has also been the case in Australia and pretty much everywhere else on the globe over the past 3 years or so.

Best of luck! Sorry we can’t help more.

Reply

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