Temperature Coefficient of PV Modules Explained
As the Indian solar landscape continues to evolve, understanding the nuances of solar panel performance becomes essential for homeowners and industries seeking optimal energy solutions. One of the pivotal factors influencing panel performance is the temperature coefficient.
The temperature coefficient of a solar panel is a measure of how much its output power decreases for every degree Celsius increase in temperature.
In India, where temperatures can vary from a mild 25°C in winter to a scorching 45°C in summer in many parts of the country, this factor can have a significant impact on your solar panels' performance.
What Is Temperature Coefficient?
The temperature coefficient is typically measured at standard test conditions (STC), which is 25 °C and 1,000 watts per square meter of solar irradiance, and is expressed as a percentage per degree Celsius. A negative temperature coefficient means that the output power of the panel decreases as the temperature increases.
For example, RenewSys’ N-type TOPCon solar panels have a temperature coefficient of -0.29 %/°C. This means that for every 1°C increase in temperature above 25°C, the output of the panels reduces by 0.29%.
It's crucial to note that the temperature coefficient of a solar panel can vary depending on its type and manufacturing process. N-type TOPCon panels typically have lower temperature coefficients than Mono PERC panels.
Why Does a Low Temperature Coefficient Matter in India?
As mentioned earlier, the average temperature in many parts of India can range from 25 degrees Celsius in winter to 45 degrees Celsius in summer. This means that solar panels in India can experience significant temperature changes, which can lead to power losses.
A low temperature coefficient is important for solar panels in India because it means that the panel will lose less power as the temperature increases. This can help to offset the power losses caused by the high temperatures in India.
Advantages of a Low Temperature Coefficient Solar Panel
Improved Energy Production: A lower temperature coefficient means that your solar panel's performance degrades less with rising temperatures. This equates to more energy production, especially during the hot summer months.
Longevity: Solar panels with a low temperature coefficient tend to have a longer lifespan since they are subjected to fewer thermal stresses. This can lead to greater overall durability and efficiency.
Enhanced ROI: Solar panels with low temperature coefficients offer better returns on investment as they generate more electricity over their lifespan.
Consistency: A low coefficient ensures that your solar system consistently produces power, regardless of seasonal temperature fluctuations. It minimizes the variability in energy production and ensures a steady supply of electricity.
How to Check the Temperature Coefficient of Your Solar Panel
The temperature coefficient of your solar panel is usually listed on the product specifications sheet or technical datasheet. You can also find this information by contacting the manufacturer of your solar panel.
Does solar panel warranty cover temperature coefficient?
A reliable solar panel from a reputed manufacturer generally comes with a comprehensive warranty. When purchasing a solar panel, ensure that the warranty covers the temperature coefficient and guarantees the panel's performance over its lifetime.
In conclusion, the temperature coefficient is a critical determinant of solar panel efficiency, directly impacting energy production and long-term performance. By understanding the significance of low temperature coefficients and incorporating this knowledge into your solar panel purchasing decisions, you can ensure your solar investment continues to yield sustainable energy rewards, regardless of the climate.