Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

Solar GuppySolar Guppy Solar Expert Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭
Got a post card in the mail today from a well know solar retailer in South Florida, said $0.98 watt for panels ... there in the "sun" and its "elec" tric

Check out the web site, and they are selling Kaneka GSA-60 for $58.80 each. Now I'm only posting this as it the first time I have something you can actually order that's under a dollar a watt for a UL listed panel ( or so the site has indicated ). I have left out the link as its not the host of this site

I'm not a fan of Thin Film, but at 98 cents a watt, it competitive with grid power on a cost basis. Interesting to say the least

Even Evergeens are getting close to 2 bucks a watt ( $2.14 ) ... wow
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Comments

  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future
    I'm not a fan of Thin Film, but at 98 cents a watt, it competitive with grid power on a cost basis. Interesting to say the least
    If you look close at the specs for those panels you will see that the efficiency is way down, less than half of most other PV panels. And even in that small size panels, they are too big to ship via UPS, so they have to go freight.
  • Solar GuppySolar Guppy Solar Expert Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    True for most thin films the efficiency being half of Si ... as for shipping, one should only use freight for panels, Fedex and UPS will not payout on claims on solar panels due to the glass, then again I have never shipped Asi so maybe that does not apply
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,371 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    I may pick a couple up just to play with (I'll be in Fl for the holidays) They other odd charactoristics, something like 60volt x 1 amp with @100voc, so even for grid connect it would be 4 to a string, making for a crowded combiner box. My ignorance of grid tie inverters might be showing here...lol I think 600V string max?
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Prosine 1800 and Exeltech 1100, 660 ah 24v ForkLift battery. Off grid for @16 of last 17 years. Assorted other systems, and to many panels in the closet to not do more...lol
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,400 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Contrary to SG's experience, I have shipped panels UPS a bunch of times with no ill effects. The trick is good packaging. I have taken sheet of rigid foam, cut it to fit behind the panels. Wrapped the panels top and bottom with styofoam, then in a oversize box with peanuts. A pain in the neck, but like I said, I have not had any trouble, touch wood.

    I got one set shipped to me, taped together, face to face with no box on them at all, just the label stuck to the panel. Arrived fine, but I was in horror when I saw them!

    Tony

    PS I have only shipped smaller <100 watts this way.

    PPS. UPS much have a bigger size/weight threshold than before. I just had something shipped that weighed 130#, was 56"x48"x 12" if memory serves
  • RandomJoeRandomJoe Solar Expert Posts: 472 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    I received all nine of my Kyocera KD135s from NAWS via UPS. Each was individually boxed. There was only some minor surface damage to a couple boxes in the first round last spring, the last five (received this week) were in great shape.

    I hear so many horror stories about UPS shipping (and have seen some remarkable video footage from various places) but so far my luck has been good...

    I wouldn't necessarily mind freight, but good grief is it ever expensive...
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Shipping notes:
    Bringing things in to Canada via UPS is notoriously expensive. When they act as your customs broker the fees are outlandish, and there's GST on all of it.

    Within BC I frequently ship things via Greyhound. I got my panels and all the associated equipment from the seller in Burnaby to 100 Mile House via bus, and all was well. It's a bit unusual, but they can be a good option for shipping.
  • vcallawayvcallaway Solar Expert Posts: 157 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Ditto on greyhound.

    Never shipped solar panels, but have shipped car hoods and doors that way. The trick is getting vendors to ship that way. Greyhound does not pickup, you have to take it to them.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    i didn't know greyhound is into package shipping. learned something today and i guess it makes sense for them to do so.
  • vcallawayvcallaway Solar Expert Posts: 157 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    ShipGreyHound.com

    I put in what it would cost for two Kyocera KC130TM panels from NAWS to Tacoma WA. The quote was $75.50 and take 2 days to get here. Seems pretty reasonable.

    Packaging is critical though. They just toss the boxes in the belly of the bus. I don't think I would ship more than two panels this way.

    The other drawback is a $300 value limit.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future
    vcallaway wrote: »
    ShipGreyHound.com

    I put in what it would cost for two Kyocera KC130TM panels from NAWS to Tacoma WA. The quote was $75.50 and take 2 days to get here. Seems pretty reasonable.

    Packaging is critical though. They just toss the boxes in the belly of the bus. I don't think I would ship more than two panels this way.

    The other drawback is a $300 value limit.

    No one at Greyhound Canada has ever mentioned a value limit. You mean we actually have some advantage over you Yanks? :p

    Four panels: $4,000. One inverter: $2,000. Shipped over-night 600 kms (375 miles). Can't remember the cost, but it must have been reasonable else a cheapskate like me wouldn't go for it. The cargo usually goes in a separate trailer that's towed behind the bus.

    Mind you, the agent in 100 Mile had some trouble getting something via her own service; bought a printer for the business. It came from Texas, but got stopped at the border because no one knew where 100 Mile House BC was. Took 'em two weeks to find the place! (Maps are useful. :p)
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,400 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Greyhound is great! I have used it several times for bulky items. Not real fast, but it does get there. You have to drop it at the bus, and have it picked up at the other end, but for ~1/2 the price of UPS, for bulky stuff, it works fine.

    Someone mentioned that in Canada, (where they tow a freight trailer behind the busses) Greyhound makes more money with the trailer than they do filling the seats!

    Tony
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,371 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future
    RandomJoe wrote: »
    I received all nine of my Kyocera KD135s from NAWS via UPS. Each was individually boxed. There was only some minor surface damage to a couple boxes in the first round last spring, the last five (received this week) were in great shape.

    I hear so many horror stories about UPS shipping (and have seen some remarkable video footage from various places) but so far my luck has been good...

    I wouldn't necessarily mind freight, but good grief is it ever expensive...

    As to horror stories GPS - general parcel service which was bought by FEDx and is FEDx ground had a standing order to return anything shipped to us after we recieved 3 leaking or damaged items in 3 different tries. They were not allowed on the premisses!

    As to shipping freight it wasn't too bad when I purchases 8 panels and a power center (40lbs + 115watt evergreen Cedar)from Sunny Electronics place in Miami. something like $340 shipped to a biz w/o loading dock in central Missouri 3 1/2 years ago. It also came much faster than I expected something like 4-5 working days.

    UPS gets you with oversized items, can't recall exactly something like total of 3 demension LbyWbyD L+W+D greater than 100 (or 110?) inches or over 40lbs cost @ double.

    The last 2 panels purchased this year weighed in at 35lbs each and came sandwiched together with some seriously awesome 4 or 5 ply corrigated cardboard at least 1/2 inch thick! shipped FedX, I don't know what it cost to ship but they upped their shipping price to $100 after I recieved them. BTW I recieved them in good health so perhaps FEDx has had a positive influence on GPS.
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Prosine 1800 and Exeltech 1100, 660 ah 24v ForkLift battery. Off grid for @16 of last 17 years. Assorted other systems, and to many panels in the closet to not do more...lol
  • wild01wild01 Solar Expert Posts: 97 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    to those of you wondering I checked shipping from miami to colorado it runs about 1.25 a watt delivered to a dock, from pheonix 1.17 but must order a whole pallet
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    wild01, how many panels to a pallet?
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • wild01wild01 Solar Expert Posts: 97 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    25 panels on a pallet $1730 delivered to commercial location. (home delivery adds $200 but one of my neighbors works for the local freight dock so...) 1.15-1/3 per watt

    Again Phoenix to southern Colorado got my invoice friday will update when I get my panels.

    ps. dock shipping will be a pain if you use paypal. (confirmed shipping address bs) I had to send a check to get around it. (hopefully they won't rip me, but I've never heard any really bad things about sun. they're always a pain to deal with, but they've never ripped me in the past. )
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,371 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Curious Wild1, how are you wiring these up? 5 to a string? or 4 with a spare?
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Prosine 1800 and Exeltech 1100, 660 ah 24v ForkLift battery. Off grid for @16 of last 17 years. Assorted other systems, and to many panels in the closet to not do more...lol
  • wild01wild01 Solar Expert Posts: 97 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    paralleling all of them
  • heynow999heynow999 Solar Expert Posts: 80 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    What can you expect from these panels in terms of longevity? I see they have a 25 year, 80% power warranty. Will they last as long as typical silicon panel?

    The price looks great, but when you factor in the higher cost for racking and the larger array you will have, are you not better off getting some evergreens for $2.28 a watt?
  • russruss Solar Expert Posts: 593 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Hey! They are guaranteed by Ling Ding's soup, music player, kite and solar company.

    Surely that is going to be around for 25 years or until they get sued and change the name - whichever comes first.
  • stephendvstephendv Solar Expert Posts: 1,571 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Kaneka is a large Japanese chemicals company listed on the Nikkei and has been in the thin film business for many years.
    They're used in some large solar farms like the 1.57MW facility in Germany: http://www.pvresources.com/en/top750pv.php

    You can view real production numbers from residential users here:

    http://www.sonnenertrag.eu/suche.php?month=NULL&month1=NULL&year=1993&year1=2010&datenimport=alle&country=0&bundesland=&postcode=&city=&kfz=&district=&inbetriebnahme=&leistung=&leistung2=&neigung=&neigung2=&ausrichtung=&ausrichtung2=&nachfuehrung=3&hersteller=kaneka&modultyp=&modulart=&wechselrichter=&kosten=&kosten2=&extd_filter=y&search=search
  • cajun666cajun666 Solar Expert Posts: 27
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future
    Got a post card in the mail today from a well know solar retailer in South Florida, said $0.98 watt for panels ... there in the "sun" and its "elec" tric

    Check out the web site, and they are selling Kaneka GSA-60 for $58.80 each. Now I'm only posting this as it the first time I have something you can actually order that's under a dollar a watt for a UL listed panel ( or so the site has indicated ). I have left out the link as its not the host of this site

    I'm not a fan of Thin Film, but at 98 cents a watt, it competitive with grid power on a cost basis. Interesting to say the least

    Even Evergeens are getting close to 2 bucks a watt ( $2.14 ) ... wow

    can u pm the link to that site
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,090 admin
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    PM sent. ;)

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • dsp3930dsp3930 Solar Expert Posts: 66 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    The shipping seems a bit high in the chain. When I called them, they quoted $1200 for 5 pallets of 25ea to NW Ohio, but I decided that I didn't have enough horizontal area for where I wanted to put them.
  • Solar GuppySolar Guppy Solar Expert Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    A pallet of 25 is about 900 pounds, you think shipping that much weight for 300 bucks is expensive?
  • halfcrazyhalfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 720 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    yes i would say 240 bucks a pallet isnt to bad Could be better but heck at less then a buck a watt?
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    $9.60 US per panel for shipping is a gift...

    we are paying for polySi panels: $7.42 Cdn per W (120W) locally, $6.92 per W (130W) in Vancouver, so there is shipping to add or $200 in gas and 2 days drive... not to mention the cost of a bed.

    EJ
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • wild01wild01 Solar Expert Posts: 97 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    I'm guessing this is why we have these panels for such a low price

    http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/view/125219

    sounds to me like kaneka may have found themselves a little cash short

    btw sun has changed their pricing $.98 a watt only applies to pallet orders
    they are up to a $1.24 a watt for small orders. still waiting on delivery of mine
  • dsp3930dsp3930 Solar Expert Posts: 66 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    I think $240 per pallet for shipping is fairly reasonable. ($9.60 per panel / $.16 per watt)

    The rep, when I talked to them, said that they bought out the entire supply Kaneka had. Supposedly, Kaneka was bought out and the new company had no need for their panels. Not sure it is really what happend, but that's the skinny I was given.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future
    dsp3930 wrote: »
    The rep, when I talked to them, said that they bought out the entire supply Kaneka had. Supposedly, Kaneka was bought out and the new company had no need for their panels. Not sure it is really what happend, but that's the skinny I was given.
    They lied, the only thing that was sold was the foam mfg for autos in TX. I suspect those are the old version panels that are being discontinued http://www.pv.kaneka.co.jp/press_release/091201.html
  • wild01wild01 Solar Expert Posts: 97 ✭✭✭
    Re: Solar Panels under a $1.00 a watt - No more waiting for the future

    Finally got my panels in. they arriver a couple days ago, in good condition-as advertised. they do all have UL on their labels so woohoo.

    one thing for anyone else ordering they have mc 3 connectors, not mc-4 (don't know if the listing specified, or if I just assumed 4) but that leads me to a tech q for anyone who would know- can mc-4 connectors be plugged to mc-3 or would that require an adapter?
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