Solar panels: the most important trends and developments in 2021


Solar panels are still very much mass produced. Every regular, affordable solar panel uses the same technology: 

  • P-type PERC Mono
  • Multiwire technology 
  • Half-cut or third-cut cells 

They also all deliver similar yields yields (approx. 20.4% and 21% / 210Wp/m2). 

There are three important factors in which solar panels try to differentiate themselves from each other:

  • The quality of raw materials used during production in combination with quality controls and standards used in the production panels of the solar panels
  • The offered product and performance guarantees (the kWh guarantee).
  • The dimensions of the solar panels

Especially the latter has become very relevant this year. In previous years there were two available solar panel dimensions. A smaller panel for the residential market and a larger panel for the commercial market. At the end of 2021 there most likely will be 15 panels with different dimensions.

Why larger solar panels?

As we discussed earlier the status quo used to be two solar panel sizes. A residential panel with 60 cells and another one with 72 cells for commercial projects. This worked because the dimensions of the cells were the same.

Different size wafers

From this year on the dimesions of solar cells will deviate significantly. This is because different sized “Wafers”. A Wafer is a thin sheet of silicium, which will turn into a solar cell once it has undergone a chemical process and a positive and negative charge. In 2021 different wafer sizes will be used in the production of solar panels. 

Available Wafer dimensions in the market 2021:

 

 Dimensions(mm) 158 158.75 166 182 210
Name M2 M3 M6 M10 G12

 

Due to the changes is wafer dimensions two 60 cell solar panels can differentiate significantly from each other while this previously would not have been the case.

Changes in cell arangement


Moreover the industry is introducing new ways for solar cells to be arranged. To further explain this we will use two examples of how this would look like for a 210mm cell:

  • Third cut, 5 wide, 24 long (120TC)
  • Half cut, 6 wide, 22 long (132HC) 

The combination of the used technique, wafer dimensions and cell dimensions determine the dimensions of a solar panel.

Autarco solar panels 2021


At the end of 2021 we want to offer the following solar panels:

Residential full black: 395/400Wp (108HC 6×18 182mm)

  • <1.8m fits with three  in a row  on a slanted roof of a house. 
  • Weighs less than 23 kg.
  • Easy logistical processing

Slanted and flat roofs (commercial) <500kWp: 450Wp (120HC 6×20 182mm)

  • Approoved for clamping on the short side of flat roofs such that no extra windcaculations are neccessary.
  • Easy logistical processing
  • Easily to combine with the improved ’16A input current’ on the inverters.

Flat roofs (commercial) >500kWp: 490Wp (132HC 6×22 182mm)

  • Maximum performance possible with existing mounting systems  (wind/snow analysis and extra support required).
  • Easy to combine with existing mounting systems for flat roofs

Industrial:  530/590Wp (144HC 6×24 182/210mm)

  • Maximum yield >500Wp

The mounting systems (flat roofs) is still in development.

 

Series W L Format Cell matrix Cell (mm) KG Carrier support SYMM Carrier support UNNI Ballast plate support
MHE345 1005 1648 60/158 6×20 158.75 19.1 N N N
MHI380 1038 1755 60/166 6×20 166 20.5 N N N
MHJ405 1133 1706 54/182 6*18 182 21.2 Y Y N
MHK415 1038 1924 66/166 6*22 166 22.0 Y>1200N/m2 N N
MHH450 1038 2094 72/166 6*24 166 23.5 Y to max 900N/m2 Y to max 900N/m2 N
MHL450 1133 1890 60/182 6*20 182 23.2 Y (custom N) Y N
MHM490 1133 2073 66/182 6*22 182 25.1 Y to max 1000N/m2 N, max 1000 N/m2 Y
MHN530 1133 2256 72/182 6*24 182 27.2 Portrait Portrait Portrait
MHO590 1303 2172 72/210 6*24 210 30.9 Portrait Portrait Portrait