Originally Posted by altamont
I talked with AS today and the rep for the solar collectors said that if ANY part of the panel is in the shade, it decreases the amount of current produced dramatically. Even having the TV antenna shadow will across the cells stops current like a on/off switch. Interesting as I thought that if you had 80% sunlight you got 80% power. Not the case. If an antenna falls across the middle of the panel, it cuts the power in half. In other words, don't put the panels under trees.
The type of panel also comes into play here. Amorphous panels are only 6-8 % efficient while Polycrystalline and Monocrystalline panels are both 12-14% effecient. What I have learned from some research is that you need at least the 36 cell panel and 44 cell panels are even better because they are putting out 21.5 volts straight from the panel. Panels drop several volts when they are hot according to what I have read so anything over 17 volts out of the panel should do the trick. Wire size also affects voltage drop.
'01 2500hd ext. cab, 8.1 litre gas, 5 sp. Allison auto
3.73 rear end
Mag-Hytec rear diff cover
Amsoil Dual by-pass oil filtration system
Amsoil synthetics all around
265 watt AM Solar, Inc. system