Trina Solar, a vertically integrated manufacturer of mono & multi crystalline solar photovoltaic panels made an announcement that they are developing a new solar panel using Upgraded Metallurgical Grade (UMG) silicon material. UMG is a mixture of various solar grade silicon although is capable of efficiencies similar to higher grade silicon. What this means to consumers is that you will see a lower price per watt for solar panels because manufactures are figuring out how get more juice out of silicon that was typically considered “lower grade”.
Trina Solar will be selling these panels under a different brand name and the panels will come with a 20 year warranty. Trina Solar claims that even though they are using lower grade silicon for these solar panels they are claiming these solar panels will achieve a 14% conversion efficiency.