Actually there are three main types of solar panel in the market, and they differ between each other mainly in 3 parameters: Efficiency, capability to withstand high environment temperature, and capability to deal with diffused sun light. Let us see as following:
First Type: Mono crystalline solar panel
It’s an old technology used over 42 plus years, and still work efficiently till today. This type of solar panel distinguished over the 2 types of solar panels by its high efficiency, as the average efficiency reaches above 18%, so it’s mostly used in case of limited installation space, or the solar panel power inverter installation process costs a lot. Consequently, if we use the mono crystalline solar panels in large solar power system, we will need less number of panels than the other two types we will discuss below. One other advantage for this type, it’s the very slow degradation by losing just less efficiency every year over its high life time span.
The appearance of monocrystalline is usually black with white diamond for solar cells connections.
Second Type: Poly crystalline solar panel
It’s also called multi crystalline, it’s easier than mono crystalline in manufacturing, and less in cost as well, but it’s less efficient than mono, as the average efficiency is approx. 14-16%. So, slightly more numbers of solar panels will be required for large solar system than mono type. The main advantage of this type, is its capability to provide good power and hold its efficiency in very hot environment "good performance", as it has a better temperature coefficient.
The appearance of poly crystalline is usually blue.
Third Type: Thin film solar panel
They are less efficient panels in compared to mono and poly crystalline solar panel, so we nearly will need double number of solar panels to construct the same solar power system capacity. This type is under many researches now, to improve its efficiency and performance. The main advantage of thin film type is its high efficient response to diffused solar light and its capability to maintain its power and does not drop much power in hot environment.