Solar – Throughout the Years

One thing that we’re most proud of here at Aztec Solar Inc is that we can provide our clients with over 30 years of solar experience. With all those years of solar experience behind us, we began thinking about our part in the history of solar technology. Often when we talk about solar we get excited about the future discoveries and developments that are right around the corner. Solar is definitely seen as a technology of the present and future, but what many people may not know is that the development of solar technologies has a very long history.

In fact, the breakthroughs in solar technology that we enjoy today all began more than 170 years ago! Today’s photovoltaic cells are based on Alexandre Becquerel’s findings in 1839 when he placed an electrode in a conductive solution, and when it was met with sunlight, a current was generated. As groundbreaking as this discovery was, it didn’t lead to the invention of the first solar cell until 1883, which was created by Charles Fritts. This first solar cell produced only 1% efficiency. The first modern silicon solar cell wasn’t created until 1954, by AT&T Bell Laboratories.

Throughout its development the Achilles heel of solar technology had always been the high cost of producing these solar cells in relation with their efficiency. In the 1950s and 60s solar fell out of grace due to its prohibitively expensive price tag ($250 per watt) and low yield (less than 10% efficiency).

But by 1973 solar panels reached 15% efficiency and were being produced for around $10 per watt. Today, the price per watt has dropped below the $3 mark and recent breakthroughshave achieved higher than 22% efficiency (on a cloudy day!). With all these advancements, solar energy is available to more people than ever before! Solar has become an increasingly affordable option, and with government subsidies, promotions and payment plans, consumers finally have a clean alternative source of energy that can rival coal in affordability.

At Aztec, we take great pride in helping you be a part of this solar revolution. We’d encourage you to contact us to learn how you can make history with us and enjoy clean, renewable energy at your home and business. Give us a call today! (916) 853-2700.

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