A solar power bank can be pretty handy when you are off-grid, far from the main power source for any length of time. Whether that is on cycling or hiking, camping trip; using solar energy is an environment-friendly option to charge your electronic equipment. However, does a solar power bank works in shade or cloud conditions? This is a common question which customers ask from every Solar Power Bank Manufacturer.
Usually, in direct, unhampered sunlight, you should give 50 hours to charge the battery on a standard (25,000 mAh) power bank completely.
Of course, this is a rough estimate based upon what manufacturers tell. However, there are also several factors for consideration which are discussed in this blog:
Energy taken from the Sun is among the most eco-friendly and sustainable ways for generating electricity. A solar power bank consumes a tiny built-in solar panel for charging a rechargeable battery (typically a lithium-ion battery).
The panel is a photovoltaic battery that is sandwiched between a semi-conductive element usually silicon). The silicon has been slightly changed through the addition of phosphorus to one end that creates a negative charge and Boron to the other that generates a positive charge. These charges on both ends create an electrical field.
The electric field pushed electrons to move around within the cells. These photons strike one of the free electrons and hit it out of the circuit where it is gathered by a conductive plate to generate electricity and charge the battery.
You need to grab as many photons targeting the solar panel as possible for increasing the likelihood that an electron will be eliminated from the field to be used in the battery.
The intensity of the Sun differs depending upon the time of day or year. However, remember it is the light not heat a solar panel needs and so just because it is the hottest time of the day does not indicate that it is the best time for charging the battery.
The light energy is the highest earlier in the day, most of the time. In fact, when the temperature gets to its peak, and extremely high temperatures can even adversely impact the panel’s performance, making them less efficient.
A common fallacy is that solar devices will charge in the hottest day even when in the shade. However, it is not the case.
You guessed it right. Solar power banks do not charge in the shade. The reason is the inability of photons to reach the photovoltaic cells.
Clouds are similar to an object creating the shade. They prevent photons from reaching the panel.
Therefore, a bit opposite to above point, your solar power bank will charge but at meagre speed.
If you have to go off for a long time, get some more panels for yourself. You can be sat for around weeks. There are portable, folding solar panels offered in the market too.