Solar panel efficiency began at less than 1% with the invention of the first solar cell. According to this infographic by the team at Solar Power Guide, Charles Fritts created a solar cell in 1883 out of selenium and a thin piece of gold coating for conducting. It wasn’t until 1954 that researchers at Bell Labs invented a silicon solar cell that had an efficiency of 6%. In 1957 Hoffman Electronics increased the efficiency to 8%. Then 2 years later they increased that to 10%.Over the last few decades the increases have gone to 17.8%, 24.1% and in 2019, 39.2 percent efficiency.
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