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Old 02-25-2013, 06:57 PM   #1
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BroncoHauler's Avatar
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southern New Mexico
Posts: 9,237
Solar cell manufacturer

Looking for a little insight on solar panel manufacturers. Not necessarily the brand name on the panel, but the manufacturer of the panels. Most companies that I'm aware of, buy the panels, mount them in frames, wire them together, maybe incorporate a solar controller and slap their name on it.

I more or less had my mind made up about some portable solar panels that I've been looking at for a while, and I asked about the manufacturer of the panels, and what the power-production warranty was. I was told the panels were made by a Chinese company called SinoSolar, and the warranty was 80% performance at 20 years.

I'm just not sure how concerned I should be that they're Chinese panels. I couldn't find much about the company, but I did see some references to ISO 9001, CE and TUV certifications. I'd much rather the panels were US or German made, but those are harder to come by, or at least not without a price premium.

I've found some folding solar panel setups with German made Bosch panels, but it only comes with a PWM controller vice a MPPT controller. Other downside with the Bosch setup is that they get shipped directly from England with no US importer/distributor.

SMB-less as of 02/04/2012. Our savings account is richer, but our adventures are poorer.
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