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What photo voltaic panels does Tesla use?

Since 2015, Tesla Power — a subsidiary of Tesla Inc. — has been creating and putting in photo voltaic panels within the U.S. Nonetheless, the photo voltaic panels that Tesla makes use of stay a thriller to many.

On this article, we shed some gentle on the matter by discussing the expertise behind Tesla’s photo voltaic panels and detailing the place they’re manufactured.

Moreover, we consider the standard of Tesla photo voltaic panels and decide in the event that they’re value your hard-earned money.


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What photo voltaic panel expertise does Tesla use?

Though Tesla Power has operated since 2015, it doesn’t personal its photo voltaic panel core expertise.

Tesla makes use of all-black monocrystalline photo voltaic panels with a black anodized aluminum alloy body from Q Cells by Hanwha, a Korean firm. Traditionally, Q Cells is a German photo voltaic panel producer; it was purchased out of chapter by Hanwha in 2012.

Tesla solar panel on a roof.
Supply: Tesla

Nonetheless, the phrase on the road is that Tesla often modifications the kind of photo voltaic panels they use for residential installations. 

Tesla offers little or no info about its photo voltaic panels. Regardless of this, we recognized two major forms of photo voltaic panels the corporate makes use of in its PV arrays: the H-series and the S-series. Each fashions are Q Cells photo voltaic panels rebranded by Tesla.

These two photo voltaic panel collection additionally use the identical smooth design with a low profile, hid edge, and no seen grid.

Though Tesla could be very discreet in regards to the photo voltaic panel expertise they use, we have been capable of determine the next three main options:

  • Half-cut cells.
  • Cut up panel design.
  • Monocrystalline silicon PERC expertise.

Half-cut cells expertise and break up panel design

The half-cut cell expertise affords a number of benefits over conventional photo voltaic cells, together with:

  • Low power loss.
  • Elevated energy output.
  • Elevated sturdiness.

Each photo voltaic panel is product of an meeting of photo voltaic cells. These photo voltaic cells are typically 6 x 6 inches. Nonetheless, half-cut cell expertise slices photo voltaic cells in half (3 x 3 inches). On this state of affairs, the photo voltaic panel is wired in two halves — a break up panel design.

A 3×3 inch half-cut photo voltaic cell lowers resistive power loss as the electrical present doesn’t need to journey as far. This leads to a 3% energy improve vs. conventional photo voltaic cells. Moreover, it shortens the gap between the photo voltaic cell busbars resulting in an additional 1% energy improve.

Lastly, half-cut photo voltaic cells are extra sturdy than common photo voltaic cells.

The break up panel design reduces the loss attributable to partial shading. If one-half of the photo voltaic panel is shaded, the second half will nonetheless work at its full potential.

Cut up panel design with half-cut photo voltaic cells.
Single solar panel with regular solar cells.
Single photo voltaic panel with common photo voltaic cells.

Monocrystalline silicon PERC expertise in Tesla photo voltaic panels

Tesla makes use of monocrystalline expertise for its photo voltaic panels — the main photo voltaic tech that boasts an 85% market share.

In brief, monocrystalline photo voltaic cells are product of a single silicon crystal that provides them a smooth black look. These photo voltaic cells are free from defects; subsequently, the electrons can transfer freely, lowering losses vs. a polycrystalline photo voltaic panel.

Typical monocrystalline photo voltaic cells have effectivity ranges above 20%, surpassing polycrystalline panels’ 15%-17%.

PERC expertise in Tesla photo voltaic panels

PERC stands for “Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell.” This expertise helps photo voltaic cells recuperate extra photons.

When photons hit a photo voltaic panel’s floor, they’re absorbed and transformed into electrons by the photo voltaic cell’s energetic layer (silicon). Nonetheless, the effectivity of a business photo voltaic panel is simply round 20%. In different phrases, 80% of the photons should not transformed into electrons and can’t transfer by the silicon photo voltaic cell.

PERC expertise displays these “misplaced” photons into the photo voltaic cell

Very like each enchancment in photo voltaic expertise, the positive aspects are minimal. On this case, there’s a rise in effectivity of roughly 2% in comparison with conventional photo voltaic panels. 

That stated, over time, you’ll discover that improve leads to a major distinction in electrical energy manufacturing. 

Notice to our readers: In 2021, Tesla introduced that it might begin producing its personal photo voltaic panels. Nonetheless, as of December 2022, Tesla continues to be utilizing Q Cells expertise. 

The place are Tesla photo voltaic panels manufactured?

Tesla photo voltaic panels are manufactured by Hanwha Q Cell services in China, Malaysia, South Korea, and the U.S. (Dalton, Georgia). Their manufacturing facility in Dalton, Georgia, is anticipated to succeed in greater than 3GW — produced yearly — in 2023.

The one photo voltaic product Tesla manufactures within the U.S. is its photo voltaic roof, product of photo voltaic tiles/shingles.

Are Tesla photo voltaic panels prime quality?

Tesla makes use of photo voltaic panel expertise produced by Hanwha Q Cells, one of many market’s leaders. Their photo voltaic panels are made to the very best high quality customary.

Though Tesla doesn’t totally disclose their photo voltaic panel specs, we recognized two predominant fashions: the H-series and the S-series.

We’ve summarized their specs under:

Photo voltaic Panel Mannequin Effectivity Temperature Coefficient Guarantee 25-year Efficiency Guarantee Dimension With Body Peak Energy Output
T395H 20.1% -0.33%/°C 25 years 86% 74.4″x41.2″x1.57″ 395W
T400H 20.4% -0.33%/°C 25 years 86% 74.4″x41.2″x1.57″ 400W
T405H 20.6% -0.33%/°C 25 years 86% 74.4″x41.2″x1.57″ 405W
T420S 19.3% -0.34%/°C 25 years 85% 82.4″x40.9″x1.57″ 420W
T425S 19.6% -0.34%/°C 25 years 85% 82.4″x40.9″x1.57″ 425W
T430S 19.8% -0.34%/°C 25 years 85% 82.4″x40.9″x1.57″ 430W

In case you evaluate the standard and efficiency of Tesla’s photo voltaic panels to different tier-1 producers, you’ll discover that Tesla’s photo voltaic panels are fairly common. Its S collection photo voltaic panels have an effectivity of 19.3% – 19.8%, whereas its H collection panels have an effectivity of 20.1% – 20.6%

In distinction, SunPower affords photo voltaic panels with an effectivity of twenty-two.8%, whereas Chinese language corporations, akin to JASolar, have effectivity ranges above 21%.

Tesla’s 25-year guarantee can also be a typical within the trade. The very best photo voltaic panels include 30-year warranties (Solaria). The truth is, SunPower Maxeon panels boast a whopping 40-year guarantee.

Truthfully, what makes Tesla photo voltaic panels stand out towards their competitors is their elegant, all-black design. As well as, their zep mounting system permits for seamless rooftop integration.

Are Tesla photo voltaic panels value it?

If Tesla photo voltaic panels are not the perfect available on the market, you may surprise if they’re value it.  

In our opinion, they’re value it as they’re very inexpensive.

Though Tesla is understood for its costly electrical autos, its photo voltaic panels are one of many least expensive available on the market. Their price is round $2.3/kW (earlier than the federal photo voltaic tax credit score), that’s decrease than the common price of $2.86/kW within the US.

As well as, Tesla affords a value match assure on eligible photo voltaic panel methods.

Maybe, the one damaging level is the dearth of flexibility of their photo voltaic system configuration; you’ll solely have the selection between a 4.80 kW, 9.60 kW, or 14.40 kW system.

Remaining ideas

In 2022, regardless of its bulletins, Tesla continues to be outsourcing its photo voltaic panels from Q cells. It advantages from all of the technological benefits of an already established photo voltaic firm, one of many market’s leaders.

Tesla doesn’t disclose a lot about its photo voltaic panel’s specs. Nonetheless, we discovered that their efficiency ranges are common in comparison with different prime photo voltaic corporations.

We consider Tesla photo voltaic panels stand out for his or her all-black, low-profile design and cheaper price.

In case you’re trying to purchase Tesla photo voltaic panels, we encourage you to ask for the mannequin’s title and specification sheet so to evaluate them to different photo voltaic methods available on the market.

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