Solar Panel Manufacturing Process

The demand for solar panels is constantly increasing year-on-year. While some companies follow a manual approach to manufacturing a solar panel, others just want to keep it automated to not compromise the quality.

In this article, we’ve mentioned everything about the solar panel manufacturing process. From the raw material required to the machines and the tests conducted to make sure top-notch quality, we’ve covered everything for you.

Components/Raw Material Required for Solar Panel Manufacturing

A solar panel is a device made up of several different components that help it convert sunlight into electricity and also, protect it from outside weather conditions. Here are all the components that are put together to make a complete solar panel.

  • Solar Cells
  • EVA Film
  • Polymer Backsheet
  • Toughened Glass
  • Aluminium Frame
  • Junction Box & Connectors
  • Silicone Sealant
  • Copper Ribbon
  • Packaging Material

Machines Required for Solar Panel Manufacturing

Solar panel manufacturing is a lengthy process and it requires multiple machines to fasten the process. Below, we have shared a list of all the machines required to manufacture a solar panel.

  • Cell Testing Machine
  • Laser Cutting Machine
  • Solar Cell Stringer Machine
  • Glass Loading
  • Soldering Machine
  • EL Testing Machine
  • Lamination Machine
  • Solar Panel Frame Punching Machine
  • Sun Simulator Testing Machine

Solar Panel Manufacturing Process

At first, there’s a polymer sheet at the back, over which the EVA film is placed. On top of that, the solar cells are assembled, and after that, there’s another layer of EVA film and toughened glass on top of them. Then all of it is put inside a frame, and that’s how a solar panel is made. While it was just a demo, let’s see how the whole process is done.

Step 1 – Making Solar Cells String

Firstly, all the raw materials required to create solar panels are collected near the assembly line, like solar cells, glass, EVA film, etc.

To create a solar panel, the most important raw material is a solar cell, which is usually imported from outside. One box of solar cells has 12 packets, and each packet has 120 cells. This means the whole box contains 1440 cells.

These cells are taken carefully out of the box and loaded into the magazine. The magazine is put in a machine called the stringer machine, which makes the string of cells.

It doesn’t matter what type of solar panel you want to make – small or large panels with the use of poly, mono, or another type of cell, this same machine will be used.

The robotic arms of this machine put the solar cells on the conveyor belt and attach the layer of ribbons to it.

After that, it solders the ribbon to the cell and cuts the string accordingly to the number of cells you want in it. This machine is computerized, and on the basis of your input requirements, it provides the final string automatically.

The solar string is checked visually to see if there’s any defect, and on clearance, the robotic arms pass it to the next stage.

Step 2 – Turning Solar Cells String into a Solar Panel

Another assembly line works in parallel where toughened glass is loaded and an EVA film is applied, then it proceeds to the next stage.

At this point, the solar strings are placed on top of toughened glass and Eva film with the help of robotic arms, which is required to deliver accuracy.

A panel with 72 cells has 6 strings; each string is made up of 12 cells.

These partial solar panels are stacked and sent to the next stage, where different teams work on them manually.

The first team applies transparent tape so that this string doesn’t stray from its position. This taping process is crucial because from here to the lamination process, this tape will hold the string in place.

Then the panel reaches another team, which solders its panel.

The next team removes the excess material left after soldering.

Then another team works on the panel and applies the RFID tag and brand logo.

Then the panel goes to the last team of conveyor belts, where they apply another EVA film on top of it with a polymer sheet and then attach a barcode to it. All the data related to the panel will be fed into the computer via this barcode.

Each task is done separately by a different team because it accelerates the process and increases productivity.

Step 3 – Laminating a Solar Panel

Once the panels are ready for lamination, they go through an EL test. With the help of this test, the machine can identify even the smallest crack in the string, which isn’t visible to human eyes.

If, unfortunately, they find a defect in the panel after lamination, then all the raw materials and time go to waste. That’s why this test is necessary. If a piece is found to be defective, it will be sent back for correction.

Once the EL test is done, the panels proceed for lamination. The stack of panels is collected, and each time 5 solar panels go into the lamination machine, it takes 14–15 minutes to laminate. It is just as simple as laminating our documents, but with an advanced machine.

After lamination, panels come out from another side of the machine at a pretty high temperature due to lamination. Here, the fans cool down the temperature for 2 to 3 minutes.

Step 4 – Trimming & Visual Inspection of a Solar Panel

After cooling down, the panels get sent for trimming; the excess material that was left during the lamination gets trimmed out here, and it is done manually.

After that, the panel gets sent to the next machine, where the visual inspection is done manually. Each thing gets checked as per a checklist, and only if the solar panel passes this inspection test does it get sent to the next stage.

Step 5 – Putting the Solar Panel into a metal frame

At the final assembly stage, the frames are created on the basis of requirements as per the size of the solar panel, and then the next step is done partially automatically, with a worker manually aligning the frame and a machine filling the sealant into it.

After that, the different pieces of frames get transferred to this punching machine, and this machine connects the frame to the panel.

Then the panel gets sent to the next stage, where they manually inspect whether or not the frame is connected properly.

Step 6 – Connecting a Junction Box to the Solar Panel

Then comes the final step of solar panel assembly, where the worker installs the junction box at the back of the panel with the help of sealant.

The panel is now ready, but sealant requires some time to dry off, so they leave the panels to dry and the frame to attach properly.

Once it has dried and toughened up, it’s time to clean the solar panel, as it still has some stains from the chemicals and sealant used during its production. The removal of these stains is necessary because they affect the performance of the panel.

Step 7 – Solar Panel Testing

After this process, the panel gets sent to a sun stimulator machine, where the machine produces similar conditions required for the testing of panels. The temperature around this machine is 25° C, the power is 1000 watts per square meter, and the airmass is 1.5.

These are the standard conditions to test a solar panel. Once the test is done, a test report is generated by the machine that displays the IV curve. This report is stuck to the backside of the solar panels.

There’s an EL test done again in a way to see if there’s been any defect in the panel after going through lamination and other tests.

Step 8 – Solar Panel Packaging

After that, the brand logo, technical specification, and warranty card get placed and stuck to the back of the panel.

The panels are now ready. They will be packed and sent to the dealers and distributors, who sell them to consumers, who then use them within their solar projects.

Tests Conducted

Throughout the solar panel manufacturing process, multiple tests are performed to make sure that the panels do not have issues and that they will perform to the fullest throughout their lifespan.

Below are the tests that are connected while solar panel manufacturing.

  • Solar Cell Quality Test
  • Solar Cell-Ribbon Peel Test
  • EVA Film Gel Content Test
  • EVA-Backsheet Adhesive Test
  • EVA-Glass Adhesive Test
  • Glass Load Tester
  • Electroluminescence Test / EL Test – Pre Lamination
  • Aluminium Frame Anodizing Test
  • Junction Box Wire Resistance Test
  • Junction Box-Sealant Bonding Test
  • Sun Simulator Test
  • High Potential Test
  • Final EL Test


Manufacturing a solar panel includes both automation processes and manual work. The automation part is important in order to achieve higher accuracy and quality.

Also, the manufacturing plant needs to be clean and the process needs to be fast in order to achieve the production target and market demand.

We hope the content of this article helped you understand each and every aspect of solar panel manufacturing. Further, If you need any help regarding this, feel free to comment down below and we’ll try to help you out.

Related Articles

2 thoughts on “Solar Panel Manufacturing Process”

Leave a Comment