N-type and P-type solar panels are named after the types of semiconductors they use. Semiconductors are materials that can conduct electricity under certain conditions. In solar panels, semiconductors are used to absorb sunlight and convert it into electricity.

So what is the difference between N-type and P-type solar panels? N-type solar panels use a semiconductor with extra electrons, while P-type solar panels use a semiconductor with extra holes where electrons are missing.

When these two types of semiconductors are combined, they create a p-n junction which allows electricity to flow in one direction, creating a current. This current is then captured by wires and used as electricity. In this blog, we will explore these differences in detail and provide examples of when each type of panel may be more suitable.

  1. Efficiency.

In general, N-type solar panels are more efficient than P-type solar panels. This is because N-type semiconductors have a higher purity level, which reduces the amount of energy lost during the conversion process. Additionally, N-type solar panels are less susceptible to degradation from exposure to sunlight and heat.

However, P-type solar panels may be more efficient in certain situations. For example, in low-light conditions, P-type solar panels may perform better than N-type panels. Additionally, P-type solar panels are often less expensive than N-type panels, making them a more cost-effective option for some projects.

2. Cost.

As mentioned earlier, P-type solar panels are generally less expensive than N-type solar panels. This is because the manufacturing process for P-type panels is simpler and requires fewer materials.

However, it is important to consider the long-term cost when choosing between N-type and P-type solar panels. N-type panels may have a higher upfront cost, but their increased efficiency and durability may result in lower overall costs over time. Additionally, the cost of solar panels varies depending on location and availability, so it is important to research prices in your area before deciding.

3. Durability.

N-type solar panels are generally more durable than P-type solar panels. This is because they are made with high-purity silicon, which is less susceptible to degradation over time. Additionally, N-type panels are less likely to suffer from hot spot formation, which can occur when a section of the panel is damaged or shaded, leading to decreased efficiency.

However, both N-type and P-type solar panels are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions, such as hail and high winds. It is important to properly maintain and clean your solar panels to ensure their longevity.

In summary, Why N-type much better then P-type:

  • Higher by 4% direct yield generation
  • Higher efficiency also by 3%
  • Less space by 3% , Saving 3 % on the structure. (1.5% saving on the project cost)
  • Much better temperature coefficient result in another 1% extra yield production
  • Less degradation : 0.4 per year versus 0.55 per year
  • Longer life and better durability.
  • Given the above it means that more production by 6% yearly and longer reliability.
  • The price is higher by 10% from the manufacturer but comparing to panels price in the project which is 30 to 40% means that adding 3-4% on the project cost and profit from 7% productivity and much longer life.
  • The N-type is the new technology, and the P-type is now old and planned to be out of production in the couple of years maximum.


Both N-type and P-type solar panels have a variety of applications, but one type may be more suitable than the other depending on the project. For example, N-type solar panels may be a better choice for residential or commercial projects where space is limited and maximum efficiency is desired. On the other hand, P-type solar panels may be a better option for large-scale utility projects where cost is a major factor.

Additionally, some manufacturers offer hybrid solar panels that combine N-type and P-type semiconductors to create a panel with increased efficiency and durability. These hybrid panels may be a good choice for projects where both factors are important.

Grace Wachira.

Technical Sales Engineer.

Plexus Energy Limited.

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