Monday, May 18, 2009

Solar Panels and battery bank


Well, I finally got a chance to hook up my solar panels to the batteries. I'm using the garden shed as "Power Central". We rent here so we have to be careful what we do. The green box above is the battery box with 4 golf cart batteries in it. You can see below that the other box is for all the associated electronics. On the left is my 60 amp charge controller. The top right is the breaker box. And the bottom right is the 3000 watt modified sine wave inverter.


Below is the battery box. Notice the very thick cable (2/0 ). The yellow wire is a temperature compensation sensor. It goes to the charge controller. When the batteries are cold, it compensates by charging more than normal. I'm in the process of taking apart some forklift battery banks and making smaller 3 cell banks with a welded steel box. Each one would weigh about 250 lbs instead of 1100 lbs. Much easier to maneuver. Two of those would be 12 volts and I'll be putting those inside the shed.

Below are the 3 panels (120 watts each). When the sun was almost setting and the sunlight was not even hitting the panels directly, I was getting 8 amps to the battery. At high noon I get about 25 amps.

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