Bi-Facial Solar Panels: What Are They And How Do They Work?

Solar energy production aims to create as much independent energy as possible for your home or business. Bi-facial solar panels have been created for this purpose – to help optimise the amount of sunlight that can be absorbed by a panel by offering two faces for the light to enter through.

But how powerful are Bi-Facial solar panels? And should you choose them over your typical mono-faced solar panels? In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about Bi-Facial solar panels, how they work and their benefits to your build. 

Let’s get started.

How Do Bi-Facial Solar Panels Work?

Bifacial solar panels work just like regular PV solar panels. Sunlight is absorbed by the solar cells inside the panel and converted into electricity. 

However, in a regular solar panel, you will experience a small amount of energy loss as there is usually a small portion of the energy which passes through the panel. Bi-facial solar panels aim to prevent this by allowing the panel to re-absorb this light energy using its second face.

In this instance, where the light passes right through and collides with the highly reflective second face, it bounces back towards the panels and can be re-generated into solar energy. 

Are Bi-Facial Solar Panels More Efficient Than Monofaced Solar Panels?

Due to the fact that Bi-facial solar panels can reabsorb lost energy, they do tend to have a higher amount of energy potential than mono-faced or regular solar panels.

However, their ability to do this relies on having sufficient space to install them, which may not be suitable for most domestic properties. 

How Are Bi-Facial Solar Panels Installed?

Bi-Facial Solar Panels must be installed with the bottom-facing side at least 4 metres above the ground. This is important as it allows space for light to reach both sides of the panel, allowing them to complete their functions.

For this reason, bi-facial solar panels are unlikely to suit a residential or domestic setting, as these will often require panels placed on the roof, with one side facing downwards. However, they work well in solar farms where they can be racked above the ground and commercial buildings where they can be built into a cover or an open roofing space.

Do Bi-facial Solar Panels Cost More Than Mono-faced?

You will find that bi-facial solar panels cost more than mono-faced solar panels due to the cost of production. Bi-facial solar panels typically cost around 30% more than mono-faced solar panels, which can make them an expensive investment.

However, it is important to note that they also promise a higher energy conversion rate. So, if you’re hoping to reach energy independence faster or sell energy back to the grid, bi-facial solar panels can offer a faster return on investment for your needs. 

Explore Solar Panel Options With Smartly 

If you are interested in investing in solar panels for your home or business, speak to one of our Smartly solar experts today. We will be happy to talk you through all of the options we have available and what type of panel might be best for your needs.
You can contact us using our live chat or fill out our enquiry form, and we will get back to you ASAP.