Fifteen years after their successful foray into the field of photovoltaic (PV) solar technology in 1975, multinational Japanese electronics giant Sanyo began research and development into a new type of PV solar cell technology.
Sanyo’s vision was to combine two existing PV solar technologies –monocrystalline silicon wafers and amorphous silicon thin-film – within a single solar cell, and to exploit the light-to-power conversion properties of each of these technologies to provide the greatest possible PV solar cell efficiency.
The result of Sanyo’s research and development was a hybrid PV solar cell technology which they named HIT (Heterojunction with Intrinsic Thin-Layer).
Prior to the development HIT PV solar cells, mass-produced monocrystalline PV solar cells achieved efficiencies of between 14% and 16%, whilst thin-film cells were capable of 6% to 8% efficiency.
Refining these individual technologies and combining them to produce HIT PV solar cells brought Sanyo a solar product which was capable of achieving unprecedented and industry-leading solar conversion efficiencies of between 17% and 20% in mass production.
HIT PV solar cells began mass production in 1997, and in 2002 HIT PV solar panels became available for the British and European market.
Properties and Performance of Sanyo HIT PV Solar Panels
Sanyo has adopted a commitment to environmental responsibility as part of its corporate policy. Thanks to the innovative design and manufacturing processes of HIT PV solar panels they require significantly less raw materials and energy in mass production when compared with standard PV solar panels. They are also guaranteed emission-free and lead-free.
The use of fewer materials in production also means that Sanyo’s HIT PV solar panels are thinner and are 44% lighter than conventional PV solar panels, thereby reducing packaging and transportation costs.
Although thinner than comparable panels, HIT PV solar panels feature a double-wall black anodized aluminium frame to provide strength and durability, and are tested rigorously to comply with international quality and health and safety standards and to ensure continued performance in adverse weather including gale-force winds, heavy snow and hailstorms.
On average, according to Sanyo’s data, HIT PV solar panels convert 30% more of the available light into electricity than standard PV solar panels. This outstanding efficiency means that fewer HIT PV solar panels are required to achieve the desired level of power generation. Not only does this benefit consumers with less available roof space, it also reduces installation time and reduces the number of mounting materials required.
Sanyo HIT PV Solar Panel Pricing and Warranties
In order to benefit from Government incentives the installer of your Sanyo HIT PV solar panel system must be Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accredited. Therefore the example prices quoted for Sanyo HIT PV solar systems will include the cost of installation by an MCS certified professional.
In order to meet the annual average electricity consumption of a family of four, a 4kW PV solar system would be required. However, restrictions on the amount of available roof space for PV solar panel installation mean that many domestic PV solar systems are limited to providing between 2 and 2.5kW.
Whilst Sanyo’s HIT PV solar panels have been available in the UK market in a range of rated power outputs from 205 to 235 Watts, the latest models offer rated outputs of 250 Watts and a typical efficiency of 17% or greater.
Based upon the number of HIT PV solar panels required (for example, a 2.5kW system using 250 Watt rated panels would require ten panels (10 x 250W = 2.5kW)) and including MCS installation, indicative costs for a domestic or small commercial PV solar system using Sanyo HIT PV Solar Panels would be as follows:
|Estimated Minimum System Cost by Output (kW)|
|Sanyo HIT 235W Panels||£9,500||£10,500||£11,700||£13,000||£14,000|
|Sanyo HIT 250W Panels||£11,000||£12,500||£14,000||£15,500||£16,500|
Sanyo’s HIT PV solar panels are proven to be 99.9962% reliable, and are provided with a minimum five-year guarantee of quality and workmanship.
In terms of performance, HIT PV solar panels are guaranteed to provide a minimum of 90% of their rated output for ten years, and a minimum of 80% of their rated output for twenty-five years.