Understanding the Types of Solar Cells

solar led lights and solar street light informationIn the past 10 years, we’ve seen green technology make significant advances in efficiency and cost-effectiveness. There’s no longer a looming question of whether or not solar technology is a viable path of energy use; now solar LED lights are a mainstay in cities, public streets, parks, and other public places because of the advancements in technology and lower prices. But there’s more to solar light than just the price. Solar technology has grown to include several different developments, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. However, one particular kind of panel may not be the best for your lighting project. Here, we dive into the differences of solar energy panels and reveal the technology that’s worth the investment. Stick around, there’s more fun in solar than you might think.

Solar LED Lights are Manufactured with the Best in Mind

Perhaps you’re a computer person and you want the best cluck for the buck. You’re not going to settle for something that will start to slow down within 6 months, you want longevity. So you try to find the best deal. You’ll probably pay more up front for the computer you need, but the initial investment is worth it because your computer won’t show signs of aging quickly. That’s kind of the same with solar LED lights. If you’re willing to spend a little more, your energy yield becomes significantly larger. There are many solar cells that have been developed since the dawn of photovoltaics, and we’ll take a brief look at them to see what they’re worth. Prepare to be educated with the current types of solar cells combined with solar street light information.

Poly-Crystalline Solar Cells

Although a newer technology and slightly more attractive to the eye, poly-crystalline solar cells aren’t ideal for solar LED lights. This is because the crystals are lower quality slices of silicon since they are less efficient between the crystal “seams.” You’ll likely see a 20% efficiency with poly panels, so you won’t really get your money’s worth even though the technology is cheaper. Plus, you’ll need larger panels for any sort of solar street light installation. Larger panels might not bode well on top of a solar light pole. As before, if you want the highest cost-to-performance ratio, steer clear of poly panels. They’re pretty to look at, but pretty doesn’t always mean powerful.

Thin-Film Solar Cells

Thin film cells are produced primarily for the residential market because of their convenient thin design. They’re terribly inefficient, less than poly-crystalline panels. You’ll need much larger surface area for these kinds of panels in order to operate solar LED lights. With a considerably larger panel, this kind of technology just wouldn’t work well for any kind of public lighting. A larger panel on top of a solar light pole suggests lower stability, and we don’t think it’s practical to have an unstable pole around people–you can guess why. Plus, these thin film solar cells are manufactured from a substance called cadmium, a highly toxic substance that many are wary about using for photovoltaics. We try to be better for the environment, not worse.

Mono-Crystalline Solar Cells

These are known for being the most efficient on the market. They’re expensive and a little more wasteful than the other types of solar cells, but these are perfect for lighting solar LED lights because of their size and efficiency. The relatively smaller panel sizes are perfect to have on top of a solar light pole without sacrificing stability. Plus, some mono panels are rated at efficiencies of 30%, so rest assured that this kind of technology gets the most energy from the sun for your dollar. Coupled with bright, low-energy consumption LED lights, this kind of solar technology is best for any sort of public lighting project.

Why This Technology Matters to You

So how does that feed into solar street light information? We want to educate project managers and city officials on what works best for public lighting. At Greenshine, mono-crystalline solar cell technology is what we adhere to in order to deliver the most cost-effective solar LED lights today. We get the best in order to deliver the best, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Solar is paving the way to a cleaner future. We’re happy to be in business for business, delivering the best bang for the buck while keeping things green, both for the environment and your wallet. Contact us to learn more.

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