Silver no longer the poor man’s gold as solar demand surges

Would you be surprised to know that over half of this precious metal primarily is used for industrial purposes like X-rays that dates back over 5,000 years? No, we’re not talking about gold; it’s silver. And as it turns out, without this unique silver metal, solar energy wouldn’t work the same. The fact is silver has the highest electrical and thermal conductivity of all metals and is the most reflective. This is why it’s highly valued when it comes to solar cells.

The average solar panel uses about two-thirds of an ounce of silver – about 20 grams. To the novice person, that might seem like a drop in a bucket, but at the cost of about $20 bucks an ounce, it contributes more to the cost of solar than to other industrial products that use silver. Over the long haul, the solar industry uses upwards of 6 % of the worlds annual silver supply. However, as the demand for solar increases in areas like China and the Far East, the cost of silver used in solar panels could double.

The primary concept in using silver metal in solar panels is to reflect the sun towards the panel, which doubles the efficiency by using both sides of the panel. Ergo, if your question is what does this mean as a possible silver investment, the fact is that the solar industry can become one of the more important sources of the demand for silver. Over 100 countries are now installing solar panels. Recently, Japan set a premium price for solar energy that was three times the rate of conventional power. So as an investor, remember this one statement: “In his world, solar power is here to stay, and solar uses a lot of silver!”

Leave a Reply