How solar energy has evolved over the past 5 years

A1A Solar shows you why now is a great time to go solar

It’s no secret that the rooftop solar industry is constantly evolving. The good news is that time has brought positive changes for solar energy. Over the last five years, rooftop solar panels have increasingly become more efficient and affordable. Improvements in the industry mean more benefits for customers.

Improvements and efficiency

Technological advancements are responsible for better, more reliable solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. Five years ago, the most efficient solar panel you could purchase was 17.8 percent efficient. Now, solar panels ranging from 20 percent to 23 percent efficient are readily available to homeowners.

In comparison to the heavy, hard-to-manage systems of the past, modern solar panels produced in the past five years are lighter and do not require as much rewiring or hardware to install. This leads to quicker, one-day installations for homeowners and business owners.

New technologies in solar energy

  • sonnenBatterie: This smart and reliable energy system provides backup power and also maximizes solar use every day of the year. The sonnenBatterie allows customers to continue using their solar panels even when the grid goes down.
  • Flexible printed solar panels: Industrial printers started manufacturing solar cells as thin as paper in 2015. The printed solar panels are flexible, produce up to 50 watts per square meter, are inexpensive to make and have 20 percent conversion efficiency. However, the printed panels are still undergoing testing since they’re highly susceptible to moisture problems and could result in lead contamination if broken.  
  • Microinverters: A new alternative to traditional inverters, microinverters improve the efficiency of a solar system by converting the electricity supplied by each panel individually.

Falling prices in the solar industry

According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, solar prices have dropped 55 percent over the last five years. Over the past decade, the average gross cost for a standard 6-kilowatt home solar system has decreased from $52,920 to $20,160. Quicker installation times helped contribute to the fall in prices. The overall reduction of prices enables the industry to expand into new markets and deploy thousands of solar systems throughout the nation. In Florida, A1A Solar Contracting is the No. 1 residential rooftop solar contractor, according to Solar Power World Magazine.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s report reveals that since 2012, module prices have stayed relatively stable while installed prices have continued to decline. Because the price of solar panels themselves has not changed much during this time, this means that the drop in installed cost was the result of a decline in the cost of inverters that convert solar power to AC power as well as other factors such as installation and system design.

Converting to solar energy

With efficiency increasing, more power is produced in less space. This is great news for homeowners and business owners because it means fewer panels to purchase, more energy and more savings!

Solar power for your home is more attainable today than ever before.