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Connecting Different Ratings of Solar Panels

1st June 2021  

One of the fastest-growing industries in terms of natural energy sources is the solar panel system industry. It is an affordable system compared to conventional energy sources. These solar panels are available in a wide variety and multiple ranges. But what ratings should you choose? What should you do if you want to connect solar panels of different ranges? We are here to guide you through that.

Type of solar panel connections

  1. Series connection
  2. The most effective way to increase your system voltage is through a series connection. Connecting solar panels in series means that the positive terminal of one panel is connected to the negative terminal of another until you are finally left with one of each terminal. These free terminals are connected to an inverter or a controller. Connecting solar panels in series increases both power and voltage.

    The output current across series connections remains the same throughout all solar panels. The output voltage across this type of connection is the sum of all voltages. These solar panels must have the same power rating.

    For example:

    Panel 1

    • Current = 10A
    • Voltage = 20V

    Panel 2

    • Current = 10A
    • Voltage = 40V

    Series connection values

    • Current = 10A
    • Voltage = 20+40=60V

    Power = Total Current*Total Voltage = 10*60=600 watts

  1. Parallel connection
  2. Connecting solar panels in a parallel connection implies that all the negative terminals should be connected to other negative ones and positive to other positive terminals. After making these connections, you are left with a pair of opposite terminals. Similar to series connection, the leftover terminals are connected to an inverter or a controller. Connecting solar panels in parallel increases current and power.

    The output voltage across parallel connections remains the same throughout all solar panels. The output current across this type of connection is the sum of all voltages. A lower power rating can drastically decrease the total output power.

    For example:

    Panel 1

    • Current = 10A
    • Voltage = 20V

    Panel 2

    • Current = 10A
    • Voltage = 40V

    Parallel Connection values

    • Current = 20A
    • Voltage = 20V (least voltage)

    Power = Total Current*Total Voltage = 20*20=400 watts

  1. Mixed connections
  2. As denoted by its name, mixed connections are those connections where both series and parallel connections exist. These types of connections are also known as hybrid connections. Series connection increases the voltage, and parallel connection increases the current. These types of connections maximize the output power. The only drawback is that the power rating must be the same. If there is a difference in power rating, the output power will fall. An even number of panels is effective in the case of mixed wiring.

    Installation of a solar panel system might feel like a big task, especially without the perfect guidelines when doing it by yourself. From picking the panels to connecting them, it indeed is difficult. But keeping these simple concepts in your mind can save you from all the confusion.

A little awareness is all you need. Get started on generating electricity by yourselves if you haven't considered it yet. It can save you from blowing up your bills. You can be one of those people to contribute to an environmentally friendly lifestyle.

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