Thin film solar panels, which are comprised of a super-thin, flexible film, can be quite small and suited to specific purposes (like solar calculators). Their flexibility means that can be used almost anywhere and they’re finding more real-world applications as time goes on.
What are the Smallest Solar Panels?
Practically speaking, the smallest solar panels range from microchip sizes to that of roof tiles. However, recent developments in this field have led to the invention of a solar panel in the form of a wire that is about 200 times smaller than a hair strand. While still in development stage, this solar panel is known to work at 15% efficiency. The smallest standard solar panels for professional residential installation are probably those made by SunPower: they are high efficiency solar panels which means they produce more energy in less area. But you can also find solar kits with just about any sized panel.
Efficiency of Small Solar Panels
Small solar panels tend to have a greater cost than comparable, standard solar panels, but they do have some major advantages ranging from aesthetics to design. Some of these photovoltaic cells can utilize both direct and scattered sunlight which makes small solar panels very handy. It all depends on what you’re looking for, although most of us are going to be using standard solar panels–not small ones–for the foreseeable future.