Solar Panels: Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline

If you are looking to install a solar power system for your property, you are probably wondering what is the difference between solar panels that is monocrystalline and polycrystalline; and more importantly, which is better? To answer this, we must first understand what is monocrystalline and polycrystalline.

Monocrystalline Solar Cells (Mono-SI)

Monocrystalline simply means single crystal, which is a solid material that is continuous (homogenous)  and unbroken. The absence of any defects give monocrystalline solar cells unique properties such as:

  1. Uniform dark look
  2. The most sensitive solar cells
  3. Work under dim light
  4. High efficiency rate that is over 20%
  5. High heat tolerance

Polycrystalline Solar Cells (Poly-SI)

On the other hand, polycrystalline is a material consisting of multiple small silicon crystals. This can be visually recognised by a visible grain, or rather a metal flake effect, when looking at polycrystalline solar panels. In comparison to monocrystalline, polycrystalline is:

  1. More sportier blue look
  2. Moderately sensitive solar cells
  3. Moderate efficiency rate below 20%
  4. Lower heat tolerance (less efficient when under high temperature)
  5. Shorter life span compared to monocrystalline

All in all, it is clear to see that the obvious advantage is to monocrystalline solar panels. However, the more popular used are polycrystalline solar panels — because of cost. Monocrystals are expensive because it is a homogeneous material, and because of that, causes high wastage in materials as well. Meanwhile, polycrystals are cheap because it is economical to produce, and there is much less wastage.

In Malaysia, Next Energy offers Hanwha QCells polycrystalline solar panels in most cases, along with other brands. For specific requests, monocrystalline solar panels will be offered as well. 

For more information, you can speak to our SEDA certified Solar PV Engineers here. We will be glad to answer any questions you might have, or to even provide you with a free power survey of your property.