PV Solar Thin Film vs. Polycrystalline

The different types of solar panels and their distinctive features

Choosing which solar panel to install depends on the individual need and suitability factors. Most of the time, people are not certain on which kind of solar Panel system would suit them the best.

Solar panels: Thin film, Monocrystalline and Polycrystalline.
Solar panels: Thin film, Monocrystalline and Polycrystalline.

The three different types of solar panels – Thin film, Monocrystalline and Polycrystaline.

Usually, people have experts to evaluate and conclude the best option for them by analysing the cost and space factor. The famous two kind of Solar panels sold in the market are PV Thin film Panel and Polycrystalline panels

Polycrystalline Solar Panels:

Polycrystalline silicon is a material comprising multiple small silicon crystals. For this solar panel, the polycrystalline silicon is made by melting raw silicon and pouring it into square mold, which is cooled and cut into perfectly square wafers.

Polycrystalline solar panels

Advantage of Polycrystalline: 

Polycrystalline is made following much simpler process which is quiet low in cost. And in there is no waste of silicon under this process.

  • . Offer a lower cost per watt for the power produced.
  • . Generate more power with hotter weather conditions.

Disadvantage of Polycrystalline: 

  • . They need good roof space to work upon, therefore they have lower space efficiency.
  • . The heat tolerance of the polycrystalline solar panels is low, which means high heat can shorten their life spans.


PV Thin-Solar Panels:

The word “thin” in the name refers to the method used to deposit the film albeit the thinness of the film itself. Thin film cells are deposited in very thin consecutive layers or molecules, ions or atoms. Thin film solar cells are made by depositing one or several thin layers of photovoltaic material in a substrate. Photovoltaic material is deposited into the substrate with the help of these different types of solar cells namely Amorphous silicon, cadmium telluride, copper indium gallium selenide and organic photovoltaic cells.

A roof with both mono and thin film solar panels

Market has seen a demand growth for PV thin- film from 2002-2015 more than 60% annual rate.

Advantages of PV Thin-film: 

. Mass production for PV thin films is much cheaper and that makes the manufacturing cost lower than crystalline based solar cells.

. The look of this panel is believed to be more attractive owing to the homogenous appearance.

. Unlike with crystalline solar panels, PV Thin film solar panels are not effected by high temperatures.

. With good space availability, Thin-Film solar panels are efficient to install and use.

Disadvantages of PV Thin-film: 

. PV thin-Film panels are low in space efficiency. They come cheap, however, need more space to work efficiently.

. If the space is low, the installation cost will go high owing to the increase in the equipment requirement like support structures and cables.

. They come with a shorter warranty as the life span of the PV thin-film panels is not very high.

One will re-acquire to have an evolution done to analyse which solar panel system would suit the best for a particular home or building. This is usually done with the help of experts.

For those who have limited space, PV Thin-Film is not a very good option to go for, crystalline based solar panels is what will suit them the best. On the other hand, for those who are looking at the lowest cost possible, PV Thin-film is the best option for them. They will have to pay the minimum for their power consumption as PV thin-solar Panels have the lowest cost per orate power.