Conventional solar cells versus Maxeon cells: the difference will surprise you.
While we know that solar energy can be used to perform a variety of tasks for your home or office space, exactly what is happening behind the scenes of that solar panel? Essentially, solar cells produce electricity through a natural reaction called the “photoelectric effect.” What this means is light energy is converted to electric energy, which can be used to power a home or business. But not all solar cells are created equally. Conventional solar cells are fragile and susceptible to corrosion, whereas Maxeon cells are stronger, work harder, and are superior to their standard counterparts. This is all part of the SunPower Difference.
SunPower: Taking Solar Cells to the Next Level
Here’s how conventional solar cells work: most solar cells are just silicon “sandwiches,” which are specially treated to make them better electrical conductors. Individual silicon wafers used to manufacture PV cells are embedded with metallic contacts, or wires. Maxeon cells already have the average solar cell beat simply because of their structural differences; most solar cells have a metal paste or some other flimsy backing that sits on the roof or the underside of the array, which is easily cracked or damaged due to its fragility.
Maxeon cells are backed with solid copper, which is sturdy and resists corrosion from the elements much more than metals used in conventional solar cell design. The metallic connectors between the cells on SunPower arrays are thicker, and therefore more resilient to daily wear and tear from thermal expansion as the temperature changes.
On the front of Maxeon cells, you won’t find any of those fine lines. The lines on other arrays in the industry are also composed of metal paste, and reflect a portion of the sun’s rays back into the atmosphere, robbing them of potential efficiency gains. What this means is there are weak points that are prone to corrosion as well.
Because corrosion or failure of cell interconnectors are responsible for the majority of cells that stop working, Maxeon cells are guaranteed to be in service much longer than the competition, and working more efficiently all the while. And because they are designed to produce 70% more energy than conventional cells, you’re investing in a serious — and quite literal — powerhouse that will outlast the competition.
Want to learn more about the SunPower difference? Connect with us to find out more.