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Colorful Solar Panels: No Longer an Embarrassment to Your Roof

published: 2020-02-07 21:30

Are you thinking about installing solar panels but worried about the navy blue solar panels not matching with the color scheme of your roof? Worry no more! Italian manufacturer Sunerg has introduced a solar panel of wide-range of colors for the use of building-integrated PV, as pv magazine has reported.

Sunerg’s latest addition to its product lines is a 275W mono-Si PERC panel, which comes in 4 colors: mahogany brown, reddish-brown, bottle green and black-grey.

The modules can be divided into further 2 categories:

  1. The panels which are completely integrated with a building
  2. The panels which are partially integrated with a building: the panels are installed through a floating structure on top of the roof of the given building.

“The PERC module was created for a niche BIPV market, in which blue polycrystalline or black monocrystalline modules can not satisfy aesthetics requirements,” the company’s CEO, Luciano Lauri, has shared his vision with pv magazine. “It is also possible to have frames, clamps, and cable box colored in order to achieve better aesthetics and a seamless integration.”


Would the Coloring Affect the Performance of the Panels?

The short answer is yes

The downside of the colored modules is that their performance is slightly less efficient than the conventional mono-Si modules, on account of the additional color coating layer on the glass.

However, these modules are just as efficient as the usual multi-Si modules.

Lauri has also shared some details about one of Sunerg’s residential projects in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The reddish-brown colored panels are selected for the project, although they do not match the surrounding red tiles entirely.

The CEO explained that the efficiency of the solar panels would be reduced to 240~250W, should the color be adjusted to a lighter red.


Colored Solar Panel Could Facilitate More Adoptions of Solar Energy

Image by Peter H from Pixabay

The traditional blue color of the solar panels is not considered as visually appealing to everyone. This poses a problem for solar energy adoptions, especially for residential solar.

When the visual aesthetics of the buildings could affect their value, its owners and residents are reluctant to adopt rooftop solar.

The conventional color of solar panels is not always appropriate for the color scheme of their roofs.

However, this concern over the visual aesthetics of the building could be resolved with the new available colors in the solar panels.


Historical Buildings May Be Viable Sites for Solar With Conditions Applied

It is even more so for the historical buildings when the exterior of the building is part of their cultural heritage.

According to Sweden’s Uppsala University and architectural consultancy Gitter Consult AB’s paper Target-based visibility assessment on building envelopes: Applications to PV and cultural-heritage values – visibility and cultural-heritage values are important factors to be considered.

One of the reasons behind people’s objections over installing solar on the roofs of historical buildings is the visual impact.

The study suggested that PV systems can be installed on the rooftop of the historical buildings, if the solar system could be well integrated with the roofs without damaging the architecture of the building.

With the conventional blue or black solar modules, only the space on the roof that is invisible from street level should be considered for solar installations.

This should minimize the visual impact on the observers of the given historical buildings.

However, the solar panels with different color coatings could match the color of the surrounding roof tiles of the historical buildings.

Therefore the roof space for solar installations is increased while the visual impact is decreased.


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