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Why are solar panels blue?

Why are solar panels blue?

8 February 2022 at Waaree
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Solar panels are blue because they are made of polycrystalline silicon, a rare kind of silicon. As a result, blue solar panels are also known as polycrystalline solar panels. The blue color is visible because of its anti-reflective coating, which aids the panels' absorption efficiency and capacity.

Do Solar Panels Come in Different Colors?

The color of solar panels comes from the way the rays of light interact with them. Therefore there are Blue Solar Panels and Black Solar Panels. The first thing to understand is that a solar panel is made up of 60 solar cells. There are three main types of photovoltaic panels: Monocrystalline (Black Solar Panels), Polycrystalline (Blue Solar Panels), and Amorphous Solar Panels.

They come in different colors, suiting your desire for a colored solar panel. Colored solar panels are more costly and less efficient than the other common ones. Colored solar panels are not easily available for commercial sale.

Why are Most Solar Panels Black and Blue?

The most common solar panels available are Polycrystalline Solar Panels (blue) and Monocrystalline Solar Panels (black). It is not a matter of color preference but the quality, ease of available material, and manufacturing process. Let's look at the reasons why are solar panels blue and black:

  • Type of material
  • Silicon is responsible for providing the panels with blue and black hues. It has a metallic grayish luster that hints at the hues in the panels. The two primary forms of silicone available are polycrystalline and monocrystalline. This is the most obvious reason why most of the panels are blue or black.

  • Anti-reflective coating
  • The second reason is the anti-reflective characteristic of solar panels. This coating helps the panels to absorb the light and capture the maximum light and reduce energy loss.

    Anti-reflective coating changes the way light interacts with the panels. This makes the panel look more bluish. The AR coating used in treating the panels will appear bluish, especially on sunny days.

Polycrystalline Solar Panels or Blue Solar Panels

Blue solar panels are one of the solar system colors, also known as polycrystalline or monocrystalline solar panels. As the name suggests, it is made out of combining multiple silicon crystals. It gives an appearance like stained glass windows and offers a lot of small fragments reflecting the sunlight at different angles.

The manufacturing of these panels requires melting the silicon crystal. After cooling the mixture, it crystallizes, creating a unique edge on the blue solar cells.

Blue solar panels are highly cost-effective due to the simplified manufacturing process. These panels are reasonable for homeowners or buyers who have medium-sized roofs as the installation cost is low and can be easily maintained. You can switch to the KW Solar Rooftop offered by Waaree to save almost 50% on the energy bill.

As silicone is used in manufacturing these panels, they have a high absorbing capacity. They capture and retain light and reduce the loss of energy. Blue solar panels are an eco-friendly option as they save a lot of energy and most manufacturers avoid using the soldering process to protect the planet.

One of the major disadvantages of these panels, however, is their low efficiency. The photovoltaic panels installed in them are less efficient than the monocrystalline panels.

Monocrystalline Solar Panels or Black Solar Panels

As the name suggests, monocrystalline panels are carved out of one silicon crystal. Monocrystalline are very sleek, and their backing paper is also black. These panels are engineered with the help of the czochralski process. Under this process, the crystal seed is positioned in a vat or vessel of molten silicon to produce delicately shaped silicon squares.

Light merges more with the monocrystalline solar cells and provides a unique look that appears black to human eyes. They are efficient colored solar panels.

Black vs Blue Solar Panels: Which Panel Type is the Best?

The basic difference between black and blue solar panels is the efficiency and the process of manufacturing. Let's look at a quick summary of the features of black solar panels and blue solar panels before making a choice.

Black Solar Panels

  • Highly efficient

  • Long-lasting

  • Sleek design

  • Takes less space

  • Expensive

  • Made from premium quality silicon

  • Functional in low light

  • Manufactured by the energy-intensive czochralski process

Blue Solar Panels

  • Requires more space

  • Less efficient when compared to black solar panels

  • Low-cost installation

  • Made out of low-quality silicon

  • Zero or no wastage of energy

  • Scattered appearance due to the visible crystals

  • Widely used

To decide between the two depends on the efficiency and cost you are willing to spend. Black panels are expensive but are pure and more efficient. They can absorb light even in cloudy weather. You can choose Waaree's Aditya Series (144 Multi-crystalline cut cells solar PV module) if you are looking for enhanced power output. On the other hand, the blue panels are a cost-effective option and provide sufficient energy.

As a whole, switching to any kind of solar panel is a great initiative. You will be saving a lot of money and protecting the planet at the same time.

Can You Get Colored Solar Panels?

Usually, the colored panels are not easily available for commercial sale. But, yes, you can get colored solar panels. Colored solar panels are made by dyeing the glass covering with the help of a special surface coating.

Colored solar panels are not as efficient as black and blue solar panels. Researchers use different nanotube technology to change the color. One of the research institutes in the Netherlands, AMOLF, uses this technology to imprint solar panels with silicon nano patterns.

Find the Right Solar Panel for your Home

Choosing the right kind of solar panels depends on factors like budget, efficiency, aesthetics, and energy requirement. Though blue solar panels are widely used and budget-friendly, if you are looking for a more energy-efficient option, then you can choose the black one as well.

At Waaree Energies, we can help you choose the right option for your home. Whether you choose blue or black solar panels, we can offer service according to your home needs. Contact Waaree to schedule a consultation and discuss what's best for your home.