The Mystery Flaw of Solar Panels

19 203 Weergaven 2 mln.
Wetenschap en technologie

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Writer/Narrator: Brian McManus
Editor: Dylan Hennessy (
Animator: Mike Ridolfi (
Sound: Graham Haerther (
Thumbnail: Simon Buckmaster forgottentowel

[5] Page 27
[8] Chapter 3
[10] Page 14

Thank you to AP Archive for access to their archival footage.

Music by Epidemic Sound:

Thank you to my patreon supporters: Adam Flohr, Henning Basma, Hank Green, William Leu, Tristan Edwards, Ian Dundore, John & Becki Johnston. Nevin Spoljaric, Jason Clark, Thomas Barth, Johnny MacDonald, Stephen Foland, Alfred Holzheu, Abdulrahman Abdulaziz Binghaith, Brent Higgins, Dexter Appleberry, Alex Pavek, Marko Hirsch, Mikkel Johansen, Hibiyi Mori. Viktor Józsa, Ron Hochsprung


  1. sicknic715
    5 uur geleden

    I sit and watch things like this and I can not help but laugh at how dumb I really am compared to the people working on these problems.

  2. ThePinkBinks
    7 uur geleden

    But we have transparent metal now! Woo! There, I fixed it for ya. 😁

  3. Boingfish1
    Dag geleden

    Report the full truth please. Some people want to believe science is real.

  4. Boingfish1
    Dag geleden

    The flaw is that and more, even more important. 100% dependency of the CCP. THAT inefficiency is more important than the gains you report.

  5. agav bond
    agav bond
    Dag geleden

    How about e waste from not recycling these solar panels in their after life?

  6. guy sumpthin
    guy sumpthin
    Dag geleden

    Sandbagged science

  7. Blue Sifer
    Blue Sifer
    2 dagen geleden

    The problem is nature tells us they're the wrong colour.

  8. Thạnh Phạm
    Thạnh Phạm
    2 dagen geleden

    Stupid science Science doesn't know The Earth ' s core pushes into the moon ' s core 1460 tons electricity per second causing tides on Earth The emitted Earth ' s magnetic field flies in circle, returning to its original position after 10 seconds, thus pushing the moon to orbit the Earth in order

  9. Joe Smith
    Joe Smith
    3 dagen geleden

    You forgot the biggest problem with solar power sometimes it’s cloudy sometimes it’s dark , therefore you need to be able to store the electricity. Unfortunately we don’t have the battery technology to store electricity on a large scale. Yet

  10. Bill Kitchen
    Bill Kitchen
    4 dagen geleden

    I see. It's an advertisement for 'Brilliant'! It's a brilliant way to get an advertisement into a video.

  11. Stephen Jacks
    Stephen Jacks
    5 dagen geleden

    The transparent conducting layer is NOT metal but Indium Tin Oxide.

  12. Robert Greene
    Robert Greene
    6 dagen geleden

    this is a good video to explain transistor construction, too (n-type & p-type topic)

  13. javier cordeiro
    javier cordeiro
    6 dagen geleden

    But why the holes jump to the N type? If there are some holes for some electrons, it would not be enaugh when the electrons fill the hole?

  14. arnold paine
    arnold paine
    6 dagen geleden

    This video should have been titled "The Fraud of Solar Panels" as even the video is fraudulent, starting with its opening statements that the reason the number of solar panels are expanding is because of price when it is all political and that fossil energy plants are being forced out of the market because of anything other then government restrictions.

  15. Brian coughlin
    Brian coughlin
    6 dagen geleden

    Now if bill gates dims the sunshine for climate control we have less energy we better leave mother nature alone

  16. Hex Moreno
    Hex Moreno
    7 dagen geleden

    Thousands of homeless Noone can donate them some solar power, most people go broke tryna pay xcel

  17. Anand Prakash
    Anand Prakash
    11 dagen geleden

    Only 20% solar panel sucks🤣

  18. Steampunk Astronaut
    Steampunk Astronaut
    12 dagen geleden

    11:44 AMAZING!

  19. 林辰叡 ray
    林辰叡 ray
    12 dagen geleden your video is copied by the china channel.

  20. Aadil Patel
    Aadil Patel
    17 dagen geleden

    Why don't they use graphene instead of metal? Graphene is transparent and hence won't block sunlight and can conduct electricity

  21. lovu. eu
    lovu. eu
    17 dagen geleden 🌹🌸🥀 SUPER COOL 🌺 🌻 🌼 💐 🧕👲🙏

  22. simon wang
    simon wang
    19 dagen geleden

    The obeisant greek cephalometrically damage because freeze coincidingly shiver times a debonair sign. materialistic, hapless quince

  23. BerndSpindler
    21 dag geleden

    My word to 'SOLAR ENERGY " ! No one talk about the millions of butteries we have to replace every 3 to 5 years. Look your car battery lest normal only 5 years But it is only one, Now you have to replace 10 or more will be about 4 to 5000 Dollar with installation. Now you se how much you save . And old batteries polluting the environment more then smoke and oil.

  24. zsqduke
    23 dagen geleden

    Efficiency is only relevant when using it to calculate dollar per watt hours.

  25. Mop's backup account
    Mop's backup account
    24 dagen geleden

    Electronic fact silicon baced diodes are made from contacting p and n doped silicon.

  26. Scibanana
    25 dagen geleden

    Okay so I just got a solar panel ad... Coincidence!? I think not!

  27. Natural Technologist
    Natural Technologist
    29 dagen geleden

    It's really no mystery for those few who hold the secret.

    1. I'm Okay ,
      I'm Okay ,
      28 dagen geleden

      Care to illuminate the rest of us?

  28. Michel Piliougine Rocha
    Michel Piliougine Rocha
    Maand geleden

    Temperature coefficients of degraded crystalline silicon photovoltaic modules at outdoor conditions

  29. Joseph Stokes
    Joseph Stokes
    Maand geleden

    This didn't have to be boring, did it???

  30. andrew vanorden
    andrew vanorden
    Maand geleden

    Wow this video is super racist. How dare you say that about George Floyd! You're finished

  31. andrew vanorden
    andrew vanorden
    Maand geleden

    Solar is shitty and gay. Surprise

  32. Unknown Stranger
    Unknown Stranger
    Maand geleden

    What about using graphene? Or what its called..

  33. Connor Martin
    Connor Martin
    Maand geleden

    What we really need is a solar panel company with the marketing level of Apple. Unfortunately the solar revolution can’t happen if it doesn’t produce a profit

  34. Khoa Tran
    Khoa Tran
    Maand geleden

    So Boron is basically Silicon's pimp opening up it's holes.

  35. Daniel Misgana Shiferaw
    Daniel Misgana Shiferaw
    Maand geleden

    I’d love a real engineering podcast

  36. Richard Marsh
    Richard Marsh
    Maand geleden

    Maybe solar panels should mimic nature. Like leaf's, darken as the sun becomes bright and lighten as the sun becomes less prevalent. Auto tinting?

  37. Marvie Aguila
    Marvie Aguila
    Maand geleden

  38. Will McKinty
    Will McKinty
    Maand geleden

    Here’s what I think...with the cost of panels continuing to drop - 20% is good enough - increase the focus on the constraint - energy storage

  39. Joan Scott
    Joan Scott
    Maand geleden

    The faithful minute quickly matter because spear approximately sound despite a miniature offence. remarkable, parsimonious cell

  40. Mikael Jonsson
    Mikael Jonsson
    Maand geleden

    In 10 years, the renewable hype will be over. Why do I say that? Because it only works when the wind blows, and the sun shines. You can’t have hospitals, industries, infrastructure etc working under those premises.

  41. JCGoogle
    Maand geleden

    That was the smoothest continuous segue into and ad I have ever seen. I mean the ones you typically get hit with come at you with cheap slap stick cliches you can see coming from a mile away.

  42. Mike MacLeod
    Mike MacLeod
    Maand geleden

    This was an excellent, digestible explanation. Nice work.

  43. Zip Cotter
    Zip Cotter
    Maand geleden

    Great job. I am also an Engineer and am a believer when serious technical resources are applied in several places consistently there will be progress. Apparently more than $200B/yr will be spent on photovoltaic by 2026. Question: how much land area will be dedicated to solar energy?

  44. Bader Al Saleh
    Bader Al Saleh
    Maand geleden

    Can we charge the solar cells at night?

  45. Iichthus
    Maand geleden

    Solar cells are not renewable. It takes far more coal to make each megawatt of solar power than that obtained by simply burning the coal. The same is true with wind turbines. Solar cells and turbines are made with coal power. The whole “green” movement is all about big business screwing the taxpayer. Just ask that idiot Michael Moore, he finally figured it out in his latest book “Planet of the Humans”.

    1. infinitelyExplosive
      Maand geleden

      That's just blatantly false. There are dozens of papers estimating the resources required to build a wind turbine, even more for solar, and they consistently show that the amount of power that renewables generate far outweigh their material cost.

  46. Dune Xapa
    Dune Xapa
    Maand geleden

    A VERY well deserved thumbs down. Real Engineering does not tell you about the REAL solution that exists right now and which can also double the output. Wonder how much Real Engineering got paid to keep a lid on this solution.

  47. John Savage
    John Savage
    Maand geleden

    Talk about investing in an questionable technology, and betting your welfare on it!

  48. John Doe
    John Doe
    Maand geleden

    Google "Sliver cells" and you will be wondering why such a break through cell which is way more efficient than the conventional solar disappeared from production...

  49. szolanek
    Maand geleden

    Good work. Soon or later, they will come up with the leaf!

  50. Robert Bruce
    Robert Bruce
    Maand geleden

    Simply ............Brilliant!

  51. OS. Temli
    OS. Temli
    Maand geleden

    Solar panel barely last a year in those harsh desert. Waste of silicon, better to make more rtx 3000

  52. Pieter Uys
    Pieter Uys
    Maand geleden

    You need to discuss the vast tracts of land that have to be given over to the renewable power sources. What is the lifespan of the panels and how will aged panels be disposed of?

  53. John
    Maand geleden

    These only work less than 30% of the time on top of the flaw. Your comparison to baseload power sources is not valid.

  54. Jes.e B.
    Jes.e B.
    Maand geleden

    Extremely well done!! Thank you.

  55. Kef103
    Maand geleden


  56. TheTikiMan
    Maand geleden


  57. David Munro
    David Munro
    Maand geleden

    Think outside the box. You can only push so many pigs through a farm gate. Why should electrons be any different? KISS Keep It simple stupid?

  58. Chavdar Naidenov
    Chavdar Naidenov
    Maand geleden

    Good explanation of the limits and obstacles to higher panel efficiency. But 230,000 MW is not an "astounding figure". This is simply 230 TWh. Meanwhile world electricity production is more than a 25,082 TWh (in 2016). Which means, solar is still less than 1% (in 2019). Not much. Which of course doesn't mean it's efficiency will not increase in importance with time. And the suggestion or hint that solar is responsible for the reduction in coal is a stereotype. An increase of about 0.5% (panels) cannot cause a decrease of about 5%(coal). Actually natural gas is displacing coal. And gas is a hydrocarbon. So please stop the gallumphing.

  59. Vi Trong
    Vi Trong
    Maand geleden

    The overrated band preferentially trip because men mostly connect versus a needless eggplant. victorious, nondescript sausage

  60. Kimberly Wiederhold
    Kimberly Wiederhold
    Maand geleden

    No mystery. Sun don't shine they don't work.

  61. Mike S
    Mike S
    Maand geleden

    Please do a video on why solar cell efficiency drops as they grow hotter.

  62. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    Yeah MatSci and EE.

  63. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    So dope is a good thing after all. N and P doping allows AC. Semiconductors are D.C. devices of their own personality, therefore complimentary symmetry completes the sine wave. More than they know.

  64. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    Efficiency is proper Engineering.

  65. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    Simplistic thinking. There is so much more.

  66. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    Triplet State and REDOX are underestimated.

  67. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    All transistors are inherently photoactive.

  68. Marty Majix
    Marty Majix
    Maand geleden

    The changing Sun negates all bets, Photons do not swim well through Ice and a changing mean solar emission frequency plays against efficiency.

  69. B W
    B W
    Maand geleden

    We got sucked into that one. Brilliant.

  70. longshorts3
    Maand geleden

    The Power loss of "light induced degradation" will never be completely solved. So, you add the losses together of bad weather, loss of light due to nighttime, and "lid", and you have inefficiencies that make solar unusable to replace Coal, oil, natural gas, hydro, and wind. I have to use coal just to heat my home in the Winter because the other means are too costly. I will not reveal how I obtain the coal. I just get it.

  71. perry lc
    perry lc
    Maand geleden

    I worked at a solar company in the early 80s the cells we were testing got 18% - 22% efficiency.

  72. No ID Reculse
    No ID Reculse
    Maand geleden

    Watch Planet of the Humans on NLlike, green energy is a scam sold as a good thing, while billionaires get richer. “Green” is not green

  73. Junaid
    Maand geleden

    8:47 - "a hole that wants to be filled"

  74. Pat H
    Pat H
    Maand geleden

    Please do a video that explains loss of productivity due to hearing of the panels. Thanks

  75. ian cormie
    ian cormie
    Maand geleden

    Took 12 1/2 minutes to get to the poìnt.

  76. Franklin Blunt
    Franklin Blunt
    Maand geleden

    Selenium was prevalent in photo-copying machines, that was the sensitive material in the drums. Also, there are still issues with mining & extraction of all these materials for the dubious endeavor of so-called "renewables", along with production, installation, maintenance, operation, deterioration, marketing, logistics, distribution, infra-structure, disposal, waste, & other factors, including research process, often ignored but required in the Life Cycle that transcends & persists for generations. Beside the fundamental energy concerns that are still inherent. Commendable that utmost efficiency is pursued in the lab, but not maintained in field or imposing issues in other areas including harm to people & environment. Beside studying natural phenomena that has achieved efficient effective relationships & fulfilled niche, but people ultimately find ways to foul those relationships & functions, such as exploiting & depleting bio-services, introducing invasives, distortion, contaminated, poison, ... Beside the basic & common ignorance, even smartest people often cleverly deceptive, obfuscate, devious, & self-indulgent of basic vice. My philosophy has determined that there are distinctions between engineering & science. An essential education requires developing critical faculties, exposing logical fallacies, adhering to disciplined experiment method, posing hypotheses & questions, healthy objectivity (absurdly in ScAmerika this is criticized by actual bigots & hypocrites without regard to the ignorance & other consequences) & skepticism, requirement of convincing evidence, rarely settling for an absolute conclusion while becoming disciplined & adhering to a virtuous aesthetic, which are absent among those promoting so-called sustainability development goals, promoting further extraction, damage, excessive consumption, & socio-econ disparity while indulging schemes, scams, injustice, & evading accountability.

  77. Shaun Ryan
    Shaun Ryan
    Maand geleden

    Isn't it strange. If I applied to build a factory on green land there would be an outer. Apply for a solar or wind farm no problem despise they are a blot on the landscape and cause extreme problems for wildlife. On top of that very little of them can be recycled.

  78. Zem Khan
    Zem Khan
    Maand geleden

    The thankful multimedia observationally hang because honey physically chop within a spotted santa. daffy, taboo pumpkin

  79. Paul Wojcik
    Paul Wojcik
    Maand geleden

    How much energy is used to create the cells? Are the old cells recyclable?

  80. Andy Smythe
    Andy Smythe
    Maand geleden

    I had this trouble, also one hot summer and it kills them right off permanently, in 25 years solar panels are pretty much scrap, there will be billions of tons of junk panels in the future, not as green as it seems right now. There is also the fact they are black and don't reflect the suns heat, thus warming the planet, to actually be green you would be better off painting your roof white or silver instead of it being the opposite, some cool the panels with water or float them on water which again retains the heat.

  81. jonny777bike
    Maand geleden

    What if they could have a small glass of plastic with water in it to lower the heat and use that heated water for hot water use and pump back cold water to cool solar cells. Use the hot water to power a generator.

    Maand geleden

    I've seen many agricultural farms turned into solar farms off of land that was originally tilled by hand. Each year crops were grown which supplied food and during the growing season oxygen. The real challenge would be how to remove the greed from those who wan't to be paid for kilowatt hours by depriving the land of food and air.

  83. shirley lake
    shirley lake
    Maand geleden

    Is it the mafia getting their cut like they do in NY for the concrete in sky scrapers?

  84. rachit awasthi
    rachit awasthi
    Maand geleden

    are there such sites if i want to learn operations in managment

  85. Moe pow
    Moe pow
    Maand geleden

    This is how our public schools should teach. But the teachers have to many gaps in their knowledge so they fill it with emotional stuff or just lean on MSU, make shit up. I couldn't continue in this field. It was hard to continue to gain true knowledge or help the little ones learn more effectively. I am way off track. Great video, I might take classes even though I am retired. My mind misses learning.

    1. Seymore Buddz
      Seymore Buddz
      Maand geleden

      So why does no one ever bring up the fact that there is no such thing as renewable energy without fossil fuels?

  86. George Hoyn
    George Hoyn
    Maand geleden

    just how much does it cost to build solar one power cell? How many solar cells are falling apart? on site and how much toxic material is used to build them Why does it cost so much to dump or recycle the cells?? Wich country make most of these solar cells??

  87. Charles Jarman
    Charles Jarman
    Maand geleden

    I’m no engineer or scientist, a lot of what is been described in scientific form zooms overhead. What I do understand though, is that we live in very wasteful homes. We block the light coming in by the walls, when if the light was allowed in then it would get warmer, if then the insulating properties were kept, there would be no need for artificially produced energy used for that purpose. I like to see more homes built with that in mind rather than the traditional, wasteful materials and design current. Perhaps we need to educate our children that the homes we are currently living in needs to be radically re-designed for their future needs and enjoyment. We live in a box, a very poorly designed box at that! What’s the saying? Think outside the box?

  88. Mike Anderson
    Mike Anderson
    Maand geleden

    I've tried my best to watch the entire video but I just can't.

    1. Edward Aguilar
      Edward Aguilar
      Maand geleden

      Having same problem,but if you read the comments some said that about the 15 minute mark somewhere it transitions to a new something that is just another experiment ,to me it’s like the personal computer ,I remember back in say 1980 there was the commodore computer,it was so hard to operate yet every year it got better BUT the consumer had to pay for the RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT-every year till we got to this stage,I am not willing to take out a 30 thousand dollar loan to heat my home or cool it ,I live in Phoenix Az where in summer I must pay $300 a month to cool my home ,now if I paid little or nothing and it lasted longer than 20 years yes I would

  89. Liam L.E.
    Liam L.E.
    Maand geleden

    Could Vanta Black be used to make better and more efficient solar panels?

  90. Joel Tailor
    Joel Tailor
    Maand geleden

    You brilliantly transitioned into sponsorship!

  91. Doug Butler
    Doug Butler
    Maand geleden

    Nice Segway

  92. sampson sunny
    sampson sunny
    Maand geleden

    this is one big commercial.

  93. Tony Canaris
    Tony Canaris
    Maand geleden

    I m not a proponent of solar panels. They have taken up thousands of acres of valuable fertile farmland here west of Yuma Imperialcounty,ca in the Imperial county,Ca. They are made of plastic and correctable metal and the wet elements and degrade . With chemtrailing going on and removing the sunshine and contamination of our skies and breathing air they are limited

  94. Bookie One
    Bookie One
    Maand geleden

    Forcing fossil fuel producers/consumers out of the market through "government mandate". Not technological advance. In NY they pay 70% more for their energy for a 15% reduction in fossil fuel use.

  95. Mind yer own Bizcuits
    Mind yer own Bizcuits
    Maand geleden

    Are you talking about a whole lot of toxic minerals? I hear China has mines in Africa, using child slave labor to mine those toxic minerals. And what about all the landfills, filling up with unrecycleable panels? And we've seen what happens when they ice over- just ask Texas.

  96. Pep Aroni
    Pep Aroni
    Maand geleden

    100% green energy by 2030

  97. Chromazome
    Maand geleden

    I just got a DIY solar panel ad right before watching The Mystery Flaw of Solar Panels.

  98. paul Fiore
    paul Fiore
    Maand geleden

    Excellent article. In Upstage NY I see solar farms covered in snow on bright, sunny days. I'm completely off grid and I can tell you that there is zero power produced when panels are snow covered. Must lose enormous amounts of energy after a snowstorm

  99. Tamara Brunson
    Tamara Brunson
    Maand geleden

    The vivacious thread historically fry because plough radiographically heat inside a labored secretary. superb, doubtful shampoo

  100. * POOFY*
    * POOFY*
    Maand geleden

    kuch samajh nahi aaya par sunke acha laga!