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How is my solar panel wired up?

Your SunPower E-flex solar panel is made up of a number of single solar cells wired together in series coming together at the junction box (top right corner) and then has a positive and negative cable with MC4 connectors attached. This shows which is the positive and negative MC4 connector coming off the panel.

Take for example the 110W SunPower E-flex panel which is built with a total of 32 SunPower Maxeon Gen III solar cells.

Each solar cell is around 3.5Watts, 0.6Volts and 5.9Amps and the cells are all wired together in series which increases the voltage but the current (amps) stays the same.

You therefore get a panel that is close to 110Watts at around 19V and ives you 5.9amps.

Each solar cell is connected to it's neighbor with SunPower's patented robust interconnect tabs which are made from stamped tin-plated copper. They have built in strain relief which means they have small gaps that allow for expansion and contraction.

The interconnect tabs are actually often seen as a weak point of a solar panel and non-SunPower panels often break and corrode. This is because they use a thin, porous aluminum paste which is baked onto the solar cell. This is thin and brittle and doesn't expand or contract as the panels heat up and cool down during the course of a day (thermal cycling) and so will break over time.

The SunPower interconnect tabs are soldered (with lead-free solder) in 6 places for added strength and a degree of redundancy in the unlikely event that one should fail. They're also on the back and so don't block the active solar surface and stay cooler and more protected.

Check out this neat video, although the SunPower rep talks about home solar they are the exact same solar cells you will find in your SunPower E-flex solar panel.

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