Why NASA Chose Solar Power Over Nuclear For The Juno Space Probe

juno solar panel

One of Juno’s 3 solar panels. This section will produce about 5kW in earth orbit, and 185W in Jupiter Orbit. Image: NASA/JPL

Juno, the first solar powered space probe to be sent to Jupiter, entered orbit around the gas giant planet yesterday. Its mission is to probe Jupiter in ways it has never been probed before to discover clues about its formation, internal structure, water content, and weather. Part of its mission is the investigate the Great Red Spot.  However, because it is currently only around half the size it was 100 years ago, it is now really just an Okay Red Spot. [Read more…]

Perovskite solar cells in commercial production just around the corner says report

Perovskite

An unassuming lump of perovskite. “The fastest improving solar cell technology there has ever been.”

We’ve previously covered the novelty of perovskites as a potential game changer for solar cell cost and efficiency, and also asked why, with such a name, they haven’t as yet debuted in the latest James Bond blockbuster. But perovskite solar cells in commercial production as the “Next Big Thing” in solar cell technology? Surely that’s a long, long way off? [Read more…]

Trina Breaks Black Silicon Efficiency Record

Solar Cell Efficiency

Trina have done it again: a solar cell efficiency of 23.5%.

Trina Solar, one of the largest manufacturers of solar panels in the world, has announced they have achieved a new efficiency record for black silicon solar cells of 23.5% on a large-area, mono-crystalline, square silicon wafer, 156 millimeters across. This beats the previous record of 22.94% Trina achieved in May 2014. The new record was confirmed by the Japan Electrical Safety & Environment Technologies Laboratories. [Read more…]

Sunpower grabs lead in bid for most efficient solar panel

sunpower solar panels efficiency

Sunpower – the ‘Rolls-Royce’ of solar panels regain the ‘Most Efficient Panel’ Trophy.

It’s on for young and old in the battle for the prestigious title of the most efficient solar panel. For a number of weeks we’ve brought you commentaries on the remarkable breakthroughs achieved by Trina (here and here). Now Sunpower — the French-owned, US-based solar panel manufacturer — has stepped up to the plate with an announcement they have achieved a module efficiency rating of 22.8 percent for its X-Series solar panel. Another world record. [Read more…]

New Year kicks off more solar cell efficiency gains

30% badge on a solar panel

30% solar cell efficiency is on the way. That would mean a 50% reduction in the cost of solar. Hooray!

Will 2016 see the beginning of the end for fossil fuels in the wake of the rise and rise of green energy? Many commentators are saying this is the case and if solar cell efficiency gains are any indication, they have a good case. [Read more…]

New Trina solar cell efficiency record smashes previous mark

solar panels on a roof and trina solar logo

Trina solar are still kicking goals in solar cell efficiency.

One year after setting the world record, the world’s largest Tier 1 solar panel manufacturer Trina Solar has done it again. The new benchmark for Trina solar cell efficiency for a p-type polycrystalline silicon solar cell has skyrocketed from 20.76 percent to 21.25 percent. [Read more…]

GET THE SOLARQUOTES WEEKLY NEWSLETTER