Top Solar Modules Listing – Dec. 2022 / Jan. 2023

Monthly TaiyangNews Update on Commercially Available High Efficiency Solar Modules

Cell efficiency matters: For our monthly top module listing we have chosen a benchmark efficiency of 21.5%. The list of 31 commercial products shows that today PERC is not able to support module efficiencies beyond 21.6% – and high efficiency cell architectures are required beyond that level. (Source: TaiyangNews)

  • Product count of top solar modules increases from 31 to 34
  • Akcome reappears in our list with two new products – HJT and PERC, while Qcells’ TOPCon product re-enters
  • Canadian Solar’s latest PERC product with 0.1% absolute higher efficiency reaches 21.7%, the highest level for commercial PERC modules
  • LONGi’s Hi-MO 5m augments power rating by 5 W to 560 W

Ending our first year and starting the 2023 cycle for our Top Solar Modules ranking, we feature 34 products in our December/January edition, 3 more than in the November listing. These are two new products from Akcome, a HJT and a PERC module, and a TOPCon product from Qcells.

In fact, Akcome and Qcells just ‘paused’ for a month with a high-efficiency module each. A HJT module from AKcome and a TOPCon product from Qcells were already included in our November and October listings, but due to non-availability of the product specs on the respective companies’ websites, they were not included in our previous edition (Note: We only include those products that are listed on company websites during our research). Now, both the companies have introduced new modules replacing the earlier products. However, a PERC module from Akcome has entered in our listing for the first time. Among the changes implemented by previously listed companies, Canadian Solar Inc (CSI) has replaced its PERC listing with an upgrade with slightly higher efficiency, while LONGi, in the PERC category, marginally increased the power rating of its 21.7% efficienct Hi-MO 5m series by 5 W, while the efficiency remains the same.

Efficiency and output power are the 2 key characteristics of a solar module. While there are several means to improve module power such as employing larger cell sizes or integrating more cells into a module, it’s the efficiency that truly speaks about the ability of the solar device to convert sunlight per area into power. That’s why this list includes only the highest efficient solar modules.

TaiyangNews has been covering the efficiency progress of solar modules through its annual reports on Advanced Module Technologies starting from 2017 and its annual conference as of 2020. Our last conference on Solar Module Innovations took place in Nov. 2021 (presentations see here); and the next virtual edition is scheduled for Jan. 31, 2023 (free registrations here). However, in the quickly changing solar sector a lot is happening over the course of a year – and to keep our readers updated about the efficiency progress more frequently, TaiyangNews has started this monthly column on commercial TOP SOLAR MODULES at the beginning of 2022.


Before going into details, here is some background on the methodology and selection criteria: Since module efficiencies have been improving considerably in recent years, more than 0.5% average per year, to make the list rewarding for technically advanced products we put the minimum efficiency to be included at 21.5%. We have listed only commercially available top modules from each cell technology stream of one module maker. For example, if a company is offering 2 different product streams based on PERC technology that have more than 21.5% efficiency, then only the product with the higher efficiency is considered for this list. But if a module maker is offering, for example, products based on PERC and TOPCon that have efficiencies of 21.5% or above, then both the products are listed here. Efficiency is the only criteria for ranking in the list (whenever available in the specs, we have used two digits after the comma for efficiencies, otherwise one). However, as we see more often products with the same efficiency, in this case power determine the order. And when efficiency and even power are the same, we have listed the manufacturers in alphabetical order.

A commercially available module is considered a product for which the complete data sheet is listed on the module producer’s website. The efficiency and power data listed here is taken from the data sheet available on the respective company’s website. This also means we have not included any new product announcements without final technical data published as their modules specs often differ considerably from the products that are finally available for purchase, and some products presented at trade fairs are not even seeing the commercial light at all. Finally, we are only listing modules based on in-house produced cells of a respective module manufacturer, which means modules using externally sourced cells are not featured in this TOP MODULES list. If module specs listed on websites seem to have ‘conspicuously’ high efficiencies, we ask for certificates from third-party test institutes among other information before we include a product in the list.

Results & Changes

Meeting these criteria, according to our research (status first week of January 2023), a total of 34 products from 23 companies have made it to the current list. This increase in count of the companies is simply because earlier companies were absent for a while. Akcome has reappeared in our coverage as updated data sheets of the company’s products are now accessible, after the older models were removed from the website when we conducted our research for the Nov. 2022 edition.

As to the number of products, in addition to the HJT module from AKcome, a PERC product of the company with 21.7% now also qualifies for listing. Qcells, after pausing in the TOPCon field of our ranking for 2 consecutive editions, is back with a new TOPCon module. Interestingly, the latest products from Akcome as well as from Qcells have lower efficiencies than their predecessors. The Q.TRON-BLKG1+ 395 W product is rated with 22% efficiency, which is less than its Q.TRON-G1+ from the same Q.TRON series that last appeared in September with 22.3% efficiency and 400 W. Akcome’s latest HJT module from the Ak iPower Series also comes with a slightly lower efficiency of 22.22% compared to the 22.5% rated previous product. While the new module is built with 132 half cells based on 210 mm wafer size and reaches a rated power of 690 W, the previous product from the Hi-Chaser series used the same number of cells and form factor but had a total power of 700 W, claiming a 6th rank in October. Akcome’s new HJT product stands at 10th place in our efficiency ranking. Another new product of the company is Ak ichaser that represents the PERC technology platform of the company. Akcome’s latest module is bifacial, uses is built with 144 half cells sliced from M10 cells and has a power rating of 560 W. It shares the 20th position with JinkoSolar’s Tiger Pro PERC module – both have identical efficiencies of 21.68%. Qcells is another company represented with 2 products in our list, however its technology streams are TOPCon and PERC. While the PERC module from the Q PEAK series remains the same in the list, the new Q.TRON-BLKG1+ is the latest TOPCon product of the company that is based on 120 half-cell configuration. The data specs do not reveal the cell size, but indicate that the module is built with 120 half cells that lead to a power output of 395 W. The 22% efficiency has earned the product a 14th rank in our list.

Another change in the current list is with respect to the top PERC product of Canadian Solar. In the last edition, its bifacial BiHiKu7 module was positioned in the middle of the PERC products at 21.6%, but its new HiKu7 series has moved up due to 0.1% higher efficiency, now rated at 21.7% efficiency and 675 W. Like the previous product it is based on G12 wafer format and is built with 132 half cells and interconnected with MBB layout, but it has 5 W more.

LONGi has also improved the power rating of its PERC Hi-MO 5m module series by 5 W to 560 W. however, nothing else has changed for the product. It is still M10 wafer based, integrated with 144 half cells and based on multi-busbar configuration. Reflecting these few additions and product modifications, the rankings for most of the panels in the list altered compared to the previous TOP MODULES edition.

The IBC modules from SunPower spin-off Maxeon have been the most efficient products in the market for many years. This has changed in November 2022 with the world’s largest wafer and module maker LONGi having introduced a new module series called Hi-MO6 with 22.8% efficiency that is at the same level as Maxeon’s products. LONGi’s latest panel is based on a proprietary HPBC cell technology, which is essentially a back contact cell architecture. While LONGi has not officially confirmed the wafer type, whether it is p-type or n-type, it is most likely to be p-type, whereas the other leading Chinese vertically integrated module manufacturers have opted to n-type for their next generation products after p-type PERC, no matter if TOPCon or HJT. Apart from being top class in efficiency, the new Hi-MO6 module series is powerful too. The module is built with 144 half cells based on M10 wafer format resulting in a rated power of 590 W, which is why it is listed above Maxeon’s product Maxeon 6 with 440 W labelled power.

As a result, Jinko Solar holds the 3rd position with its Tiger Neo TOPCon module JKMN-72HL4-V that is offered with a power rating of 585 W and an efficiency of 22.65%. Huasun and Jolywood share fourth position. Both products have the same efficiency of 22.53% but for different rated module power. Huasun’ HJT module with 700 W, the most powerful on the list, is based on G12 wafer size in a 132 half-cell configuration, while Jolywood’s product is based on TOPCon technology; it has M10 wafer size and 108 cell configuration. This Niwa Light product has a rated power of 440 W.

Canadian Solar holds the 6th position. The HJT module of Canadian Solar has an efficiency of 22.5%, employing G12 wafer format and is based on 108 half-cell configuration. Named HiHero, the module is rated at 440 W. JA Solar’s DeepBlue 4.0 remains the same at 7th position. This is JA’s second module on the list but an n-type bifacial module that has an efficiency of 22.4% for a rated power of 625 W. It is built based on 182 mm wafer format and 156 cell configuration.

SPIC’s IBC module, based on German solar research institute ISC Konstanz’s Zebra technology, stands 8th place; it has a rated power of 440 W and 22.3% efficiency. Again, it shares that rank with REC, whose Alpha Pure-R series HJT product has 22.3% efficiency and 430 W module power.

Akcome’s HJT module now takes 10th rank with an efficiency of 22.22% for a power output of 690W. The Astro N5 TOPCon module of Chint Astronergy continues to reach an efficiency of 22.1%, which now means the 11th spot. Astronergy is employing 144 of M10 half cells to realize an output power of 570 W.

DAS Solar is a Chinese cell and module manufacturer from which we have listed 2 modules – one comes with TOPCon and another is based on PERC technology. The TOPCon module has an efficiency of 22.1% and 570 W power output. Built with bifacial technology, it is made of 144 cells based on 182 mm wafer format. Eging PV’s AuroraPro series module is a TOPCon based bifacial module with an efficiency of 22.05%, which means the 13th place in our ranking. The module has a rated power of 685 W. As described earlier, a TOPCon product from Qcells takes 14th position with an efficiency of 22% and a power output of 395 W.

The remaining 20 products listed are below 22%, of which one is employs TOPCon cells, while 2 are based on HJT, and the bulk of 17 are PERC modules.

Trina Solar’s Vertex S+ is based on TOPCon technology, drops to 15th position, with introduction of new products, This multi-busbar half-cell n-type module has an output power of 425 W and an efficiency of 21.9%. As previously, Meyer Burger is offering its HJT product with the same efficiency of 21.8% and power rating of 390 W. Jinergy is another HJT technology company, whose product is based on M6 cell format and reaches 21.68% module efficiency.

There are several module series with efficiencies slightly exceeding 21% available today as high efficiency cell architectures are not a must to reach that level, but in order to design products today beyond 21.6% the cell technology is key. As shown in the graphs, PERC has been in general not been able to support efficiencies above 21.6% today. Most of the modules with efficiencies above 21.6% are employing cells based on high-efficiency cell architectures such as IBC, TOPCon or HJT. Until recently LONGi and Risen were somewhat of an exception offering PERC modules with a high efficiency rating of 21.7%.  Risen Energy’s 210 mm based 450 W PERC module shared the 17th rank along with LONGi’s 21.7% efficient 182 mm based 560 W model until our November edition, but now Canadian Solar also joins the list with an efficiency of 21.7% based on 132 half-cell configuration with 210 mm wafer size and a rated power of 675 W. If rounded, the next 3 sharing rank 20 would also reach 21.7%, but the companies – Akcome, Jinko and Jinergy – have given 2 digits in their spec sheets. JinkoSolar’s Tiger Pro is a module with 21.68% efficiency based on 144 cell configuration resulting in a rated output of 560 W. The newcomer from Akcome is a bifacial product with the same number of cells, cell format and output of Jinko.

Of the further 13 listed products, all of which are based on PERC (except Jinergy’s HJT module), 5 reach 21.6%, 4 come with 21.5%, and 4 are rated in-between. The PERC products from Astronergy, Akcome, Canadian Solar, DAS Solar, Eging PV, JinkoSolar, Jinergy, LONGi, TrinaSolar, Qcells are also listed in addition to their high-efficiency products as these panels still meet our criteria of at least 21.5% efficiency (see Top Solar Module Listing November – 2022).


As discussed above, our latest monthly high-efficiency module ranking (featuring the summary of our research in the first week of January) has undergone a few  changes due to which rankings changed slightly as well. Akcome, which we delisted last month, has reappeared with two new products based on PERC and HJT, and Qcells presented its latest TOPCon product series after pausing for 2 editions. Interestingly, the latest product series of both the companies have lower efficiencies compared to the previous generation ones – and they have also lower power ratings. Canadian Solar’s bifacial PERC module is replaced with a 0.1% absolute higher efficiency module of a similar same series but is not bifacial anymore. LONGi, while keeping its efficiency leadership of 22.8% in back-contact technology, has increased the power rating of its second product in the list, a PERC  module, from 555 W to 560 W.  Stay tuned for the next update next month.

PS: If you have spotted somewhere a solar module that meets our criteria and might be missing in this list, please send us the link of the website with the product specs to [email protected].

Disclaimer: While TaiyangNews is carefully conducting its research for the module data shown in this article and graphs, we assume no liability for its accuracy, completeness, or timeliness.


About The Author

Shravan Chunduri

HEAD OF TECHNOLOGY At TaiyangNews, he is responsible for drafting the technology reports and articles that are regularly published in TaiyangNews.--Email: [email protected]

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