Q-cells is one of the most reputed brands in the Solar Industry.
It is manufacturing high-quality and durable solar panels for its customers.
You are right!
In this post, I will review the Solar Panels by Q-cells.
Let us start.
History of Q-cells
Q-cells is a product brand of Hanwha Q-cells that manufactures world-class solar panels in the world.
It was founded 22 years ago in the year 1999 by Anton Milner, Reiner Lemoine, Holger Feist, and Paul Grunow in Thalheim Germany.
In 2012, its assets were acquired by the South Korean Giant Hanwha Group and Q-cells became Hanwha Q-cells.
Now, it has solar manufacturing units in South Korea, Malaysia, China, and the USA with its global headquarters for Technology and Innovation in Germany.
You can find its networks spanning over continents:
It has its sales offices around the world:
Q-cells Solar Panels Power Range
Q-cells manufactures solar panels in the range of 310 watts to 425 watts.
Please see in the chart below:
I am dividing these series into 3 broad categories for your convenience:
The Technology of Q cells Solar Panels
Q-cells solar Panels are based on PERC (Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell) technology.
In this technology, a layer is pasted at the back of the silicon cell.
This layer reflects that part of sunlight that has passed through the silicon cell un-deviated and makes it available again for the photovoltaic effect. Hence more electrons are released and you get more current.
In simple words, you get more power even on cloudy days, sunrise, and sunset when the sunlight is the minimum.
In addition, it has incorporated the half-cut solar cell technology in its panels, improving the structural strength and the efficiency of the solar cell.
Its advanced busbar technology has reduced the current flow path and hence current losses are reduced, and you get more power.
Its upper and lower module parts are connected in parallel, making them function independently of each other.
The main benefit of this configuration is that in case anyone part is shaded the other part is not affected and you still get the output.
Its anti-PID technology (Potential Induced Degradation) is effective in checking the flow of stray/leakage current from solar cells to the other parts of the module like glass, frame, and the mounting structure.
You get more power.
Do you know that when you unbox the solar panel and take it out in the sunlight, it losses some of its power within the first few hours of exposure to sunlight?
This effect is called Light Induced Degradation or simply referred to as LID.
Its Anti-LID technology keeps this degradation under control.
Q cells Efficiency
The efficiency of the solar panel shows its ability to convert sunlight into electricity.
The G-series solar panels have efficiency in the range of 18.4% to 20.1%
Q cells Temperature Coefficient of Power
We all know that with the increase in the cell temperature beyond 25°C (77° F), the performance of the solar panel deteriorates.
the reduction in the power can be determined by the metrics Temperature Coefficient of Power
Its units are %/°C and its value is written negative, representing a loss in power.
The temperature coefficient tells us the percentage decrease in the power per degree rise in the temperature beyond 25 °C.
For example, a solar panel having a temperature coefficient of power as -0.4%/°C will lose 0.4% of the rated power with every degree rise in the temperature beyond 25°C.
Q cells Temperature Coefficient of Power range is -0.35%/°C to -0.36%/°C and is considered good.
We can check the power loss in Q-cells solar panels.
For example, if the temperature of the cell is 43 degrees.
Putting the value in the above formula, we get:
The power loss = (43° C - 25° C) * 0.35%/°C = 18° C * 0.35%/°C
Similarly, the power loss with 0.36%/°C is 6.48%
I can say that the power loss of Q-cells is in the range of 6.3% to 6.48% when its cell temperature is 43°C.
A power loss under 10% is considered fine.
Strength of Q cells Solar Panels
The panels will remain outside for their whole life facing harsh weather conditions.
Therefore, they should be strong enough to withstand extreme weather conditions.
The Snow Load Rating (Front Load) and the Wind Load Rating (Rear Load) represents the capability of the solar panel in withstanding heavy snow and wind pressure respectively.
The Q-cells solar panels are strong and have both these ratings above the market standard.
Let us check out the following table:
All the panel series except the large solar panels (L-series) by Q-cells have Front-load and a Rear-load ratings of 5400 Pa and 4000 Pa respectively.
(Q.Peak DUO L-Series have Rear Load rating of 2400 Pascals).
In short, the Q-cells solar panels are very strong.
Q cells Solar Panel Warranty
Warranty is an assurance that a manufacturer gives to the buyer against any defect in the product and its performance within the stipulated time.
The solar panels come with 2 types of warranties; one is the Product warranty and another is a Performance warranty.
The Product warranty protects your panel from manufacturing defects, early wear and tear, and environmental issues.
The average product warranty for a solar panel is 10 years.
The Performance warranty ensures that your solar panel is going to produce a certain percentage of the maximum power even after 25 years.
The average power output in the 25th year is 80% of the maximum rated power of the solar panel.
Q-cells solar panels exceed both these averages with a good margin.
You can see in the chart below:
The G series comes with 12 years product warranty
The G+ series (G6+, G8+, BLK G8+ series) have a product warranty of 25 years which is Excellent you need not worry about product defects for the next 25 years.
Q-cells offer a performance warranty that the solar panel will produce 86.1% of the rated power in the 25th year.
In the first year, the degradation is 2%. It is Light- induced degradation and thereafter 0.54% every year till 25th year.
The LID of 2% is good otherwise you find an average LID of 3% in the industry.
Let us draw the chart and get to know its performance in the 25th year.
Q cells panels will produce 93.3% in the 10th year and 86.1% in the 25th year.
Price of Q cells Solar Panels
The average price of Q-cells solar panels falls in the bracket of $ 0.64/watt to $ 0.78/watt.
It is in the lower end when you compare it with the panel prices of other brands in the same power rating category.
One can say that the Q-cells solar panels are quality solar panels in the budget.
Units Produced by 5 kW Solar Power System
In good sunlight, the 5 kW solar power system having Q-cells solar panels installed on the roof will produce around 20 units per day.
PROS of Q cells Solar Panels
i) Affordable Price: Although the efficiency of Q-cells solar panels falls in the moderate range when we look at their quality and the price, we can say that these are good quality buy within your budget.
ii) Great Technology: Q-cells solar panels are based on PERC technology that is one of the most efficient technologies in the market.
It means that your electrical appliances will run fast even in cloudy weather, sunrise, and sunset.
They have incorporated this technology in the half-cut solar panels, reducing heat loss and shading loss. The anti-PID and anti-LID technology have ensured that you get more power for decades.
iii) Very Good Strength: Q-cells solar panels are very strong and the best for people who are living in extreme weather conditions where there are frequent hurricanes or snowfall.
iv) Excellent Product Warranty:
If we look at their warranty, they offer one of the best warranties in the market.
Their G+ series have a Product warranty of 25 years that is awesome.
v) Reputed Brand: Q-cells is 22 years old Brand and it is associated with the Hanwha group. Its good network around the world and the latest R&D facilities make it a reliable brand for the future.
CONS of Q cells Panels
i) Efficiency: Although Q-cells solar panels have above-average efficiency but it is not the highest.
Their maximum efficiency is 20.1%.
We have 22.2% efficient solar panels available in the market manufactured by SunPower.
ii) Performance Warranty: Although it has a low LID of 2% in the first year, the 2nd year onwards degradation rate is 0.54% that is on the higher side, making it produce 86.1% of the rated power in the 25th year.
While on the other hand, we have solar panels from SunPower, REC Alpha, and LG Neon are having low degradation (than 0.54%) from 2nd to 25th year.
iii) Temperature Coefficient: If you are living in a hot climate, the temperature-related losses are more in the solar panels.
Therefore, one should look for a panel having a low-temperature coefficient of power. Q-cells solar panels are having temp coefficients of -0.35%/°C.
And they perform well in hot climate but not excellent because we have solar panels having temperature coefficients as low as -0.26%/°C.
I would like to see Q-cells making low temp coefficients solar panels in the future.
Q-cells is a reputed brand and its solar panels are best suited for:
I can say that q-cells solar panels are reliable solar panels with great warranties and technology that comes with an affordable price.
*(Basis of my rating: I quantify the given parameters with reference to the best value available in the market.
For example, if I want to quantify the efficiency of the solar panel on a scale of 5.
I use the following formula:
Assuming, the efficiency of the solar panel in consideration is 20% and the highest efficiency available in the market is 22%.
The Efficiency rating = (20%/22%) x 5 = 4.5
Please let me know your experience with Q-cells solar panels and share that in the comment section below.
Find the Profitability of Q cells
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