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Diodes on Solar Panels: How They Work and Why They Matter?

April 14, 2023


As the concept of sustainable development getting more and more popular, it is an vital way  for solar panels to generate clean energy. However, to make sure solar panels functioning correctly and safely, diode are an indispensable component on solar panels. 

What are Diodes?

An electronic component known as a diode permits current to move in a singular direction, which is made up of two terminals, such as  an anode and a cathode. When the current flows from the anode to the cathode, the diode conducts electricity, however,  the diode obstructs the current flow, functioning as a one-way valve.

It is necessary for solar panels to use Diodes to prevent current from flowing back into the battery when ligth is too weak.  For this purpose, a 3 amp or 8 amp diode can be used. A bypass diode may also be installed to prevent shaded panels from drawing down other panels, using the same type of diodes.

Types of Diodes Used in Solar Panels

Bypass Diode in a solar panel is used to protect partially shaded photovoltaic cells array inside solar panel from the normally operated photovoltaic string in the peak sunshine in the same PV panel. They allow current to flow around a shaded cell, ensuring that the rest of the system is not affected.

Blocking diodes are used in parallel-connected solar panels to prevent the high voltage from one panel from damaging the other. They ensure that the current flows in one direction only, preventing damage to the solar panel's cells. As diode only passes current in one direction, so the current from solar panels flows (forward biased) to the battery and blocks from the battery to the solar panel (reverse biased).

Blocking Diode used in solar panelBypass Diode used in solar panel

How Bypass Diodes and Blocking Diodes Work on Solar Panels?

The bypass diode and blocking diode collaborate with the solar panel to ensure its proper functioning.

Photovoltaic cells convert solar energy into electricity when sunlight strikes the solar panel. The diodes are responsible for ensuring the electricity flows in the right direction through the solar panels.

Solar panels connected in series can produce a high voltage that can harm the solar cells. Diodes on solar panels are positioned in reverse bias, allowing current flow in one direction only, preventing damage to the solar panel's cells.

Diodes are necessary in solar panels to avoid shading. When a single solar panel in a series is in the shade, it can reduce the voltage and current in the entire system, leading to a decrease in power output. Diodes on solar panels prevent the shaded cell from affecting the rest of the system by obstructing the current flow from the shaded cell.

videos on solar panels

The Future of Diodes in Solar Panel Technology

As a renewable energy, solar energy can be a catalyst for sustainable development and ecological civilization construction. The demand for renewable energy is increasing, the technology used in solar panels is continually evolving. While diodes have played a crucial role in the efficiency and safety of solar panels, there is still room for improvement.