Another new world record for efficiency set by SunPower

SunPower has launched the SunPower E20 series of solar panels; the industry’s first commercially available solar panels to achieve total area efficiencies of 20% or more.

The E20 series offers two new features: positive power tolerance rating and comprehensive inverter compatibility. The positive power tolerance rating ensures that the power generated by each panel meets that panel’s rating, or up to five percent more – but not less, as is common in the industry.

With comprehensive inverter compatibility, customers now have the flexibility to use the highest performing transformer-less inverters to maximise system output. Transformer-less inverters are light-weight, easy to install and cost-effective.

The new 96-cell E20 solar panels are available in 333-watt and 327-watt models for rooftop installations. They feature SunPower’s 22.4 percent efficient patented Maxeon cell technology. The Maxeon solar cell captures significantly more sunlight and conducts more electrical current than conventional solar cells. It holds the world record for efficiency among commercially available, mass-produced solar cells.

The prototype for the E20 was successfully developed using funds provided by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under its Solar America Initiative, which was awarded to SunPower four years ago. The E20 efficiency rating was confirmed by the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Lab.

“With the E20 series solar panels, SunPower has once again broken a world record for efficiency,” said SunPower CEO Tom Werner.

“SunPower consistently delivers the most efficient and reliable solar technology on the market, guaranteed to deliver the greatest return on investment to our customers.”

SunPower’s E20 series of solar panels will be available in Europe and Australia later this year, with availability extended in North America and Asia early in 2012.

A global leader in high-efficiency solar solutions, the SunPower Corporation is based in San Jose, California.

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