Scale Of Roof And Panel Can Have Important Implications For Overall Solar Costs

Ean GoodguyJuly 23, 2018 1025 0

Scale Of Roof And Panel Can Have Important Implications For Overall Solar Costs

The good news is, you have a roof over your head, and, we would assume an electronic device capable of accessing the world-wide-web, thus, your ability to check out this informative solar pricing article.  Surprise, there is no bad news, in this case, just thoughts to consider about that roof you have acquired.  When setting out to have a solar panel array installed at your house, one must consider that roof as the foundational space for which you can make the most efficiency of solar power to home electricity.   The more area designated, the more sun harnessed.  

Scale Of Roof And Panel Considerations

Area of roof or property designated for solar use is at a premium. Remeber, a relatively small number of panels shares total costs. Also, importantly, panels may account for as little as 20 percent of the full price. And here, the most economical panel choice that comes out in the lead is the stacked two separate panels. It was ahead in LCOE by anywhere from five to eight percent, depending on the climate and weather.   So, we know that area size and efficiency of panels which can are too into that area are the defining variables by which we should consider when planning a solar panel system installation.  

Research And Considerations Of Solar Efficiency

These variables correlations raise an essential question for the future solar consumer. If there's a significant fixed cost involved in getting panels on your roof, does it make sense to install more efficient panels, despite their higher prices? A collaboration among MIT researchers and authorities of solar power firms have answered this question with a conditional "yes." Importantly, the researchers assume the availability of a technology we have yet to develop.

The results become clear when speaking of utility-scale installations.  Multi-junction solar panels offer no clear benefits over other options. That's in part because space becomes a non-issue,  and also because large numbers of panels can share the same infrastructure.  This design is making the panels a more significant percentage of the total costs. Therefore, whatever technology has the lowest dollars-per-Watt comes out on top.

Cost Efficiency Studies Respond To Solar Pricing 

This study is responsive to the total cost of installation.  This total cost of solar installation has been dropping, targeted for improvement by the US Department of Energy for years to come. And, also relating, economists are estimating that these costs would have to be cut by 50 percent before a single-layer thin-film panel would make more sense.

It's important to note that this analysis ignores a particularly important extra option: silicon panels.  These types of solar panels have higher efficiencies and strong competing pricing. Also, notably to consider when thinking about all of the variable factors of roof space and technological possibility, thin-film innovations are relative newcomers to solar power, and there may be significant manufacturing improvements that can be achieved with them; the same is unlikely to be true for silicon-based panels.

Finally, these calculations will be relative to changes in costs.  These changes in value can become influenced by improved manufacturing, lower installation costs, or electricity prices. But they do give us a sense of where things are now and what will have to adjust for the economics to end up different. And, if something looks likely to be stable for long enough, it can be practiced to direct policy. For example, if the DOE is convinced that installation costs will continue to soak up more than 70 percent of the price of rooftop solar, then it could work to promote multi-layer solar construction.  These long-term stabilities can lead to real savings in the long run for us all. 

If you want to move into the future and join the solar revolution, or if you want to find out what solar panels are right for you, go to and try our price checker tool. You can see how much a system will cost, and how much you can save over the next 20 years. 

For more information relating to going solar, don't forget to visit our solar blog section for more handy guides and articles. 

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