Making a Solar Panel from Scratch is Hard AF.

This is what solar panel design looks like.

Hey, Krystal here. I’m taking a break from promoting events to share a little process. Many people have asked me, “how exactly do you make a solar panel anyways?”.

The supplies are fairly standard if you are familiar with consumer electronics. You need a soldering iron, metal tabs, flux, solder plus the magic ingredient: solar cells. What many people don’t realize is that solar cells (thin sandwiches of silicon) are PAPER thin. I’ve literally sneezed, dropped a cell on my desk and watched it shatter into a dozen pieces. Solar cells are soldered together in an array to create a panel. If you solder cells in parallel, the amperage adds. If you solder cells in series, the voltage adds. Actually assembling a panel is a dangerous & delicate balance. It reminds me a lot of playing that children’s game Operation. You have to press the soldering iron down firmly enough to forge a good electrical connection, but soft enough not to shatter the cell.

Some days are more successful than others!

A not so successful day.

A not so successful day.

Better!

Better!