These are cheap (free!) solar panels that I had picked up from someone that was throwing these away a few years ago. I was searching Craigslist and found someone who was giving these away. I picked them up with high damage, repaired them to the best of my ability, and now I am gradually working on putting these in my DIY system.
The panels were manufactured in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, making these panels almost 35 years old. You can see the humidity damage in the panel and the glass is slightly dirty. After cleaning and repair, most of these panels will produce 1 amp to 2 amps, and around 12 volts each.
Today’s panels will not do what you see in this video. Today’s panels, whether Grape Solar, Canadian Solar, SunTech, Trina, etc., will not degrade or erode like these panels. Today’s panels are designed to last 20+ years with 0.5% degradation per year estimated. Panels made today or in the past few years are well sealed and better built, plus more efficient in how the polycrystalline or monocrystalline cells are manufactured.
Here is my DIY Solar and Wind book that was published on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1508454310/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1508454310&linkCode=as2&tag=erilaysyoucha-20&linkId=URNF3DPORKY4M5YR
Barnes and Noble Nook version of my DIY Solar and Wind Book:
This is a great book on Amazon that I would recommend you pick up to understand solar power (this is the 2013 edition and is great reading): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1907670289/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1907670289&linkCode=as2&tag=erilaysyoucha-20
This is the Grape Solar Panel that I am particularly fond of (many people sending me messages):