☀️ Solar PV cells are usually square-shaped and measure 6 inches by 6 inches (150mm x 150mm).
☀️ There are different configurations of solar cells that make up a solar panel, such as 60-cell, 72-cell, and 96-cell.
☀️ The most common solar panel sizes for residential installations are between 250W and 400W.
The Solar Cell Size Chart below shows the different types of solar photovoltaic (PV) cells that are available on the UK market today. Solar PV cells are devices that convert sunlight into electricity. They are made from silicon (Si), which is a semiconductor material that can absorb light and generate electric current.
Monocrystalline and Polycrystalline Cells
There are two main categories of solar PV cells: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. Monocrystalline cells are made from a single crystal of silicon, while polycrystalline cells are made from multiple crystals of silicon. Monocrystalline cells have higher efficiency and durability than polycrystalline cells, but they are also more expensive and difficult to produce.
Solar PV Cell Shapes
Monocrystalline cells are produced by cutting thin slices or wafers from a cylindrical ingot of silicon using a laser. The shape of the ingot determines the shape of the cell. If the cell is cut as a perfect circle, it will have the least amount of silicon waste, but it will also leave gaps between the cells when they are arranged in to a solar panel. These gaps reduce the power output of the solar panel, because they do not capture any sunlight.
To increase the power output of the solar panel, solar PV manufacturers try to fill the gaps between the cells by cutting them into different shapes. One common shape is a square with rounded corners, which is called an M2 cell. This shape has a size of 156.75 mm x 156.75 mm (6.17 in x 6.17 in) and has been widely used in the industry for a long time.
Larger Solar PV Cell Sizes
However, as silicon prices have fallen, manufacturers have found it more profitable to cut the cells into larger and more square shapes, which can cover more area in a panel and generate more electricity. This has led to the emergence of various new cell formats, such as M4, M6, G1, M10, and M12. Each format has a different size and edge length, ranging from 161.7 mm (6.37 in) to 210 mm (8.27 in).
Solar PV manufacturers have officially started efforts to establish a new ‘M10’ (182mm x 182mm (7.2 in x 7.2 in) p-type monocrystalline) large-area wafer size standard to reduce manufacturing costs throughout the related solar industry supply chain as the number of large-area wafer sizes have emerged in the last few years.
No Standards for Solar PV Cell Sizes
The problem with having different cell formats is that they also result in different panel sizes. This means that the industry has lost the standardization and compatibility that it had with the M2 cell size format. This can ultimately affect the installation, transportation, and maintenance of solar panels in the future. Therefore, some experts argue that the solar PV industry should agree on a common solar PV cell size and format to avoid confusion and inefficiency.
You now know the different types of solar PV cells and how their shapes and sizes affect the power output and efficiency of solar panels. But the big problem comes from losing standardization and compatibility in the industry due to the different cell formats, and the solar industry should agree on a common PV cell size and format to avoid confusion and inefficiency.
Feeling motivated and ready to switch to solar? Want to learn more? Your best option is to talk to one of our friendly solar energy experts on 01268 928 690 or click on the ‘Enquire Now’ button below and we will help you find the right fit for your home and budget.
Frequently Asked Questions About Solar PV Cell Sizes
A wafer with a length of 166 mm and a maximum diagonal length of 223 mm — with cut corners — is the M6 size. The M2 size, which was the most popular before, had a length of 156.75 mm and a diagonal length of 210 mm.
M6 wafers are compatible with the standard 60- and 72-cell panel frames, but M10 and M12 wafers are larger and require bigger modules that are more suitable for utility-scale solar projects.
The average wattage of domestic solar panels ranges from 250 to 400. Domestic solar panels are usually 1.7 metres in length, 1 metre in width and 3-5cm in thickness. The weight of domestic solar panels is typically between 18kg and 20kg.
To estimate the size of the solar PV system, you need to divide the total amount of electricity that the system needs to produce by the number of hours that the sun is at its peak. This will give you the approximate size of the solar PV array in kilowatt-hours (kWh). Then, divide this number by the efficiency factor of the solar panels, which tells you how much electricity they can produce per unit of area. This will give you the power output of the solar panels in kilowatts (kW).
There are two common types of standard solar panels: 60-cell and 72-cell. A single solar cell has a square shape of 6” x 6”. A 60-cell panel has a 6×10 grid arrangement. A 72-cell panel has a 6×12 grid layout, making it about a foot longer.
The additional photovoltaic cells in 72-cell panels do not always mean higher wattages and power output than 60-cell panels. The power output of a panel is not directly related to the number of cells it has.
Latest Solar Technology Posts
- How trees affect solar panels and what you can do about itThe rapid growth of renewable energy has led many homeowners and businesses to invest in solar panels as a sustainable and cost-effective alternative to traditional power sources. However, the presence of trees near solar installations can significantly impact their efficiency and output. Understanding the complex relationship between trees and solar panels is crucial for maximizing […]
- Cost of Solar Panels UKSolar panels have emerged as a sustainable and environmentally friendly solution to meet energy needs in the United Kingdom. As the country continues its transition towards renewable energy sources, solar panels have gained significant popularity. This article provides a comprehensive overview of the cost of solar panels in the UK, exploring the various factors that […]
- BLACK FRIDAY SALE!NXTGEN Energy Ltd Announces Black Friday Sale to Help More People Go Solar and Save Money on Their Bills NXTGEN Energy Ltd, a leading provider of renewable energy solutions across Essex, Kent, London and beyond, is excited to announce its Black Friday Sale aimed at promoting sustainable energy practices while allowing customers to save big […]
- How to Go Green with Solar Panels: A Guide for Smart HomeownersSolar Panels are a great way to save money on your energy bills, reduce your carbon footprint, and increase the value of your home. But before you jump on the solar energy bandwagon, you need to be aware of some potential pitfalls and scams that could cost you more than you bargained for. In this […]
- Solar Together SchemeSolar Together: A Group-Buying Scheme for Solar Panels Are you interested in installing solar panels on your roof, but worried about the high upfront cost? Do you want to join the green energy revolution and reduce your carbon footprint? If so, you might want to consider Solar Together, a group-buying scheme that helps you get […]
- Commercial Solar Panels FAQs☀️ Commercial solar panels can significantly reduce energy costs for businesses, and lower your carbon footprint. ☀️ Commercial solar panels cost £16,000-£70,000 for small to medium-sized businesses, depending on the system. ☀️ There are various grants and schemes available for businesses that want to install commercial solar panels. If you’re a business looking for a […]
- Can Solar Panels Be Installed on a Slate Roof?☀️ Yes, solar panels can be installed on a slate roof, but it requires a different installation technique. ☀️ Due to the different installation required it costs 30% more than an installation on a standard roof. ☀️ The savings on your electricity bill will normally more than make up for this higher price point. Solar […]
- Is it worth buying solar panels in Essex?☀️ Over 40,000 homes in Essex have a solar panel system installed. ☀️ You’ll normally break even on solar panels in about 10 years. ☀️ A 3.5kW solar panel system will cost about £7,000 on average. Solar panels are becoming more affordable and more common in the UK, with over 1.3 million households already using […]
- Do solar panels work in a power cut?☀️ Solar panels can work in a power cut, but only if they’re installed with a battery and a relay. ☀️ Power cuts cause solar panels to automatically switch off to protect electrical utility workers. ☀️ About 23% of the homes in the UK are affected by power cuts each year, and it’s going up. […]
- Types of Solar PanelsHow do solar panels work? Solar panels are devices that convert sunlight into electricity. They are made up of many small units called photovoltaic (PV) cells, which are usually made of silicon or other semi-conductive materials. When sunlight hits the surface of a solar panel, the photons (particles of light) are absorbed by the PV […]
- How are Solar Panels made?☀️ The solar cells in normal solar panels are made up of crystalline silicon ☀️ The solar cells are stuck onto a clear pane and connected with metal wires ☀️ A backsheet and frame are sealed onto the clear pane to form an airtight unit Solar panels are not easy to make, as they require […]
- MCS CertificationWhat is MCS certification and why is it important? MCS stands for the Microgeneration Certification Scheme, an initiative that was introduced in 2007 to support the fast-growing microgeneration industry in the UK. Microgeneration refers to the small-scale production of heat or electric power from renewable sources, such as solar panels, wind turbines, heat pumps, biomass […]