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Subject Bypass diode in a solar panel
Author Sascha Deri
> I have an old solar panel made by Arco systems model M65 and says 43 =
> watts , inside the junction box there seems to be a little fuse or diode =
> joining the cells together it vlooks like a little ball with a pin on =
> each side. One of these is broken do you know where i could get one of =
> these.Thank you in advance and i realise that this product seems to be =
> out of production .


That little item inside the junction box is a bypass diode which keeps the panel from overheating if some portion of it gets shaded. You can get a replacement one at Radio Shack but you will want to take the existing one with you so that you can duplicate it. I have no idea of the rating required for those old panels anymore. If your panel will absolutely never ever get shaded then you can probably get away without the diode if you have trouble figuring out the rating.

Good luck with your project
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