What is a Shading in a Solar PV Array?

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The Effects of Shading in a Solar PV System


The Solar Panel efficiency and output are based on the level of Sun radiation and light that is gathered by each cell.

By Reducing the effect of shading from, building(s), trees and/or other obstacles can be maximised the system efficiency.

The Layout of a system can help avoid the effect of shading on the module and must be considered at the design stage of the project.


Effect of Shading:

The highest losses of a PV system caused by darkening a PV module from the PV array.

Low sun irradiance caused by shading will cause power loss across the entire PV system as results the current of the system will decrease as well.


Three Types of Shading

  • Temporary Shading
  • Permanent Shading
  • Self-shading / Direct Shading



Permanent / Temporary Shading caused by a wrong design. In this picture a three provide shading.



Temporary shading

Temporary shading can be caused by:

  • Snow
  • Leaves
  • Bird Droppings
  • Dirt/Dust
  • Soot


  • The Effect from temporary shading can be reduced by self-cleaning the array.
  • The Effect of self-cleaning can be increased by increasing the tilt of the array
  • The self-cleaning of the array is achieved by washing away the obstacles/dirt/dust with the flowing rainwater.
  • Snow on a PV array will melt faster than the snow that surrounds the array.


A Solution

SolarEdge Smart Systems with the SolarEdge Power Optimizer, allows each PV Modules to have its own MPPT. Each Solar PV Module acting as a Micro Inverter, therefore Your Solar PV Array will be not affected in case of a PV Module Shading or Failure.

This Proven Method can allow you to Harvest Up to 25% More Power with Your Solar PV System.