Image courtesy of SunPower White Paper
SunPower was recently involved in a study regarding the effects of blocked sunlight, or shading, on the efficiency of their panels. They set up four systems that were shaded by various objects: pipes, a leaf on one of the panels, and a simulated tree. They then tested two Sunpower models, the SunPower E-series and the SunPower X-series against two different systems utilizing standard efficiency panels. The study was conducted by the elite solar lab testing facility PV Evolution Labs. You can take a more in-depth look at the effects of shade on SunPower panels in the YouTube video below.
One of the most interesting caveats of the study is in its conclusion, where it asserts that “it is particularly noteworthy that the SunPower groups outperformed both [the commodity panel] test groups despite the fact that one [commodity panel] test group used microinverters, which are typically believed to mitigate the impact of shading. “
Due to the overwhelming wattage of SunPower panels, they are unable to use the so-called ‘better’ microinverters, which allegedly compensate for blocked sunlight. However, as this study proves, shading problems are no problem when it comes to a SunPower array with a string inverter (that is, one inverter for the whole array, versus multiple microinverters per panel on an array).
Choosing SunPower gives you as the consumer comfort that your money is being used wisely, and that you’re getting the most out of your investment possible.
CST is proud to be a SunPower elite dealer, and we hope that you think carefully about choosing the reliability and cost-effectiveness that Sunpower has to offer when you make the choice to go solar.