SunPower Corp., a manufacturer of solar cells, solar panels and solar systems, says it has produced a 96-cell, 333 W solar panel with a 20.4% total area efficiency. The prototype was developed using funds provided by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under its Solar America Initiative (SAI), which was awarded to SunPower approximately two years ago.
According to the company, the panel's larger area cells are cut from a 165-mm diameter ingot and include an anti-reflective coating for maximum power generation. With a total panel area of 1.6 square meters, including the frame, SunPower's 20.4% panel achieved the highest efficiency rating for a full-sized solar panel, as confirmed by the National Renewable Energy Lab.
SunPower expects to make the solar panel commercially available within the next 24 months. Additionally, the company plans to begin operating a U.S. panel-manufacturing facility in 2010 using automated equipment designed and commercialized with SAI funding.
SunPower: (408) 240-5500
SOURCE: SunPower Corp.Â