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Partial shading, devastating for glass panels

In real life situations solar panels are often exposed to shading. The worst of them is partial shading, good examples are shading from tree branches, bird droppings, leafs, worst because you believe your panel is still charging the battery as there is sun on the panel. The reality is different. Partial shading affects glass panels the most, their output drops substantially. Flexopower panels are also affected, however their output from partial shading is miles ahead.

We compared a 85W SolarWorld and a 79W Flexopower panel. Both are high quality products and have similar power specs. We covered 10% of its surface to simulate partial shading. The results are stunning:

85W Solar World 79W Flexopower
Maximum current, rated at STC

4.7A

4.1A

Current measured, unshaded

3.2A

3.3A

Current measured, 10% shading

0.7A

2.9A

Output loss from 10% shading

-78%

-12%

In summary, 10% cover causes the glass panel deteriorating to a trickle charge, where we observe a 12% drop with the Flexopower panel. Next time you go camping, use a Flexopower product.

10% cover causes 78% loss in output10% cover causes 12% loss in output


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