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This article is about Solar Panels in Subnautica. Click here for information on this subject in Below Zero.

The Solar Panel is a generator crafted with the Habitat Builder that converts sunlight into Energy. It is the only power generator available by default and is best used on Seabases close to the surface, being relatively ineffective in deeper biomes. It will not convert the bioluminescence of deep sea life forms to energy, even one as large and bright as the Giant Cove Tree.

It is constructed with the Habitat Builder and can be placed on any surface at any angle. It can also be damaged and destroyed by striking it with the Survival Knife three times.

One solar panel is enough to power a seabase with basic energy needs. More solar panels or another kind of generator is required to power other equipment, such as Water Filtration Machine and Moonpool.

A Solar Panel can transfer power up to 20 meters to a Seabase or Power Transmitter only with a direct line of sight. It can store up to 75 energy.

Energy Collection Rate

Day and Night cycle

Subnautica simulates a day and night cycle. 24h in game correspond to about 20 minutes of real time.

During the day the Solar Panel receives the most sunlight and charges the most. During the evening it decreases in charge since it receives less light as the sun goes down. At midnight there is no charge at all.


The table below contains the results of testing Solar Panel collection rates. All tests were done at midday. Please note that these are approximate results, and not exact (Sunlight % can vary slightly since the player can only see the percent to the nearest whole number).

Sunlight % Energy per

Second (EPS)

Time to Collect

1 Unit of Energy

Time to Collect

25 Units of Energy

Approximate Depth

of Solar Panel

100% .255 Energy 3.916 Seconds 97.9 Seconds 0m
90% .229 Energy 4.364 Seconds 109.1 Seconds 16m
80% .204 Energy 4.904 Seconds 122.6 Seconds 42m
70% .178 Energy 5.628 Seconds 140.7 Seconds 61m
60% .154 Energy 6.512 Seconds 162.8 Seconds 98m
50% .128 Energy 7.816 Seconds 195.4 Seconds 123m
40% .102 Energy 9.772 Seconds 244.3 Seconds 148m
30% .077 Energy 13.052 Seconds 326.3 Seconds 173m
20% .052 Energy 19.280 Seconds 482.0 Seconds 198m
10% .025 Energy 40.160 Seconds 1004.0 Seconds 224m

Each Sunlight % appears to collect around .0025 units of energy per second.


Quartz.pngQuartz.pngTitanium.pngTitanium.pngCopper Ore.pngArrow-right (1).pngBuilder.pngArrow-right (1).pngSolar Panel.png

Data Bank Entry


Solar power is the most prevalent power source in the galaxy, and so it is no accident that the standard solar panel is the default means of powering a habitat. A power source is a requirement of habitat oxygen generators and other onboard modules.

  • Provides limited power for small outposts and survival habitats
  • May be mounted on or near the habitat itself, or placed remotely and connected via power transmitters
  • Power rate relative to sunlight exposure



  • The player used to be able to place Solar Panels on top of the Cyclops. This was removed to encourage the player to go deeper.[1]


  1. Dated May 5th, 2016.