Solar panel manufacturer SunPower has undertaken extensive research and testing that has led them to predict their solar panels will have a Useful Life of more than 40 years.
This is more than 15 years beyond their warranty term and well past any conventional panels on the market.
Useful Life is defined as 99% of panels producing at least 70% of their original power, meaning a site can continue to produceuseful energy using their solar system without requiring significant maintenance.
There are a number of elements that can affect panel reliability over the long term such as extreme temperature variations, high heat and moisture, stress from shade, dirt and snow, and physical stress from installation. Not all panels perform equally well when exposed to these conditions, so choosing the right solar panels is crucial.
SunPower’s unique design elements give their panels more power and a higher reliability. Their thick all-metal cells with a copper foundation make them very resistant to corrosion, and their flexibility minimises stresses caused by wind and load pressure. Conventional panels are susceptible to corrosion due to their thin metal design and paste composition.
Recent studies of solar panels have found:
- Conventional Panels degraded sharply in power after just 2000 hours of damp heat. SunPower panels have been tested to beyond 7000 hours with no significant drop in power
- Roughly 200 cycles of extreme temperature variation caused the cells in Conventional Panels to degrade, whereas SunPower cells were unaffected after over 2500 thermal cycles
- SunPower panels have been load-tested against the equivalent of hurricane-force winds with no damage or power loss, unlike Conventional Panels
- Conventional Panels lose 8-13 times more Power than SunPower X21 panels when single cell shading occurs
Sunpower has succeeded in producing panels with more power and greater reliability than any competitor, making us proud to be an authorised partner. For more information on SunPower solar products, call Cola Solar on 1300 374 357.