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Author Topic: Grid Hopping  (Read 62147 times)
Scruff
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« Reply #60 on: April 29, 2016, 06:51:42 PM »

 facepalm
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Scruff
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« Reply #61 on: April 30, 2016, 04:51:15 PM »

Your 'Ah' meter sounds like a register of disappointment



Proper Job for the job!
not a Wh counter either though
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 04:53:23 PM by Scruff » Logged
Nickel2
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Method mixed with Madness


« Reply #62 on: April 30, 2016, 07:39:16 PM »

I've just forked out for an 'Epever' 4210A Tracer unit plus MT50 box-thing. It has a RJ45 coms port with software that allows you to monitor most of it on your PC.
(Mods please remove if not liked  fight ) I have been planning for a long time, it all may happen before I snuff it. No panels or battery bank yet, I'm still watching flea-buy for suitably affordable stuff. I've just run 60+ feet of cat5e out of the kitchen door to the shed to try it out on a pair of old sealed batts.



Hopefully I'll get some panels soon!
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 08:07:42 PM by Nickel2 » Logged

1.140kW mono south-facing at 49*
EpEver 4210A at 24v
24V 400 Ah battery. (4x200Ah FLA)
EpEver STI1000-24-230 pure sine inverter
Of course it'll work. (It hasn't caught fire yet).
Scruff
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« Reply #63 on: May 01, 2016, 11:13:39 AM »

That's neat N2.
25.37V is a good result for 66% SOC.

How does it calculate SOC?

My TriMetric is set to manual reset but holds very reasonable accuracy for 3 weeks, once i dialled in the efficiency @ NOC capacity. Specific gravity is such a difficult thing to teach a semiconductor.
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Nickel2
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« Reply #64 on: May 01, 2016, 01:26:41 PM »

At the moment I'm still playing learning how to set it up. In the battery options it has Sealed, gel, flooded and user specified. I assume ( whistlie) that it has the SOC/voltage/temperature curves programmed in for the various type of battery. You can manually alter the other charge-conditions if required. The batt-temp shown defaults to 25c when there is no temp-probe connected. The batteries were at about 11c when that screenshot was taken.
The monitor indicates about 0.05V low compared to my Fluke 75 DVM, so I have reasonable confidence in the device's measuring accuracy. I have still to find out if my confidence is justified. The 4210A is the low-volt, indoor spec model of the tougher 'shed' model.
These units appear to be new this year (or late last year), internet reviews seem favourable.
Edit time:
Further play investigation shows that the 25.3 volts in the field shows that I have entered a maximum DOD for my system of ??%, and that 25.37 is the voltage for that DOD according to which type of battery and what temperature etc. The actual real-time volts and current read across the window in the battery bit, unlike down the window in the PV panel bit. Something to do down Chinese inscrutability?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 02:31:59 PM by Nickel2 » Logged

1.140kW mono south-facing at 49*
EpEver 4210A at 24v
24V 400 Ah battery. (4x200Ah FLA)
EpEver STI1000-24-230 pure sine inverter
Of course it'll work. (It hasn't caught fire yet).
Scruff
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« Reply #65 on: May 03, 2016, 07:51:08 PM »

The TM above watches 2 x series Cr-235s that run between one week to three week deep cycles for maybe less than half the year.
It took a while to get the SOC calibrated, and most of the progress was made by comparing hydrometer and time with the auto reset to 100% SOC set to off.

In the beginner user mode it was accurate up to 4 days and then started to drift. After 3 weeks it was reading 50% low of my usable power.
Most of the non-zero error on a 500A, 50mV shunt I corrected using better signal wires to the shunt, fat twisted pair metered to the same line resistance and soldered to the same terminal if they were a pair.
With auto-reset 100% charged, it worked fine and perhaps only I would notice, I just kept seeing glitches in the matrix, the last 5% charge is mega difficult to do, when you have equipment working in a way that actually can. My battery is 100% efficient for intents and porpoises until 95% SOC (where most chargers agree charged is). The last cell crosses 1.275 SG after another 3 weeks at 60% efficient, no load.

This tells me 95% = charged enough. 100% takes three weeks (3-4 days on mains) and ruins my lovely linear graph!  Roll Eyes
235Ah @ C20 discharge = 255Ah @ C48 (average load).
De-rate 15% for nominal 10C = 215Ah
No derating age (2 years old, soak tested)

The reduced discharge curve and Peukert Exponent offset the actual inefficiency due to internal resistance. So I can set the meter corrected efficiency to 100%
The most honest answer you'll get about SOC, that's not from a hydrometer; Is from a trusty charger you know the profile for. If I see the battery gobbling amps like pacmans then I could approximate that to SOC =  empty, and when same charger is throttling back I know that to be SOC = fulla leckytrons,  but it does rely on having an unbridled charging source. After a while it's easier to judge these things with regard off load voltage and load voltage drop to see if what the SOC is saying is true. Another good mile marker is when the PWM solar controllers start to hum the so many photons song.

Most of the Ah counters on the market are user set to watch a charger and reset at the threshold of absorption to float (hence why PV and it's fuzzy work ethic upsets the simpler versions).

So mostly fiddling with the efficiency got me there when I compensated for undershoot or overshoot at deep cycle intervals. What's also very helpful about manually reseting 100% SOC is I can read > 100% charged power.
'tis better to err under-capacity than over.

Moral of the story folks; "Meter your meters!".


Is that 25.3V LVD Nickel? Sounds like healthy vegan batteries.  


« Last Edit: May 06, 2016, 10:41:26 PM by Scruff » Logged
Scruff
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« Reply #66 on: August 20, 2016, 06:40:42 PM »

I've not made any substantial progress on this, I still can't program the Inverter Combi with an after-market interface. I'm still too stubborn to buy the proprietary one. I can actually build a better programmable charger with TriStars and SMPS's from what I have knocking about as well as programmable relays for cheaper than the combi USB interface.  fume
I have a solution to the permanent PE earthing  conundrum but it requires hacking the unit or an expensive and lossy isolation traffo.  Angry
Anyways that pile of lemonade aside....



Behold a "Spares/Repair" fully functional TS 45 MPPT for the price of a PWM.  extrahappy  extrahappy




There's some funny data in the log.  facepalm

Have a gander at this..



Battery voltage min. daily.
That poor, poor abused battery.   Cry
I wonder if the owner blamed the TriStar for wrecking the battery... whistlie


Investigations reveal the controller is 3 years in service. (It might still be warrantied...they'll run for decades as long as you don't isolate the battery under load) Maybe 2 owners or arrays seeing as the trips were reset. Internal log only goes back a few months.

Last attached to a 24v battery with a 46Vmp ~ 1kW array. I expect it was fully loaded to 45 amp battery current.
The custom profile was set to charge a 6volt battery or li-ion cells maybe but I doubt it was successful because the controller needs 9volt to turn on.

The log files show he ran the battery down until the inverter started screaming LVD almost every night, auto-equalised sealed batteries, he even managed to drop down to 16.5V one night. In fact only three occasions did he remain above 24.0V on record..

System averaged 6kW generation a day with an ~8kWh battery (*per charge controller*).  Undecided




Nothing untoward about the controller end of things except some staining on the array + terminal from what I'm guessing is melted conductor insulation.



I know what a mess!  fight...I'll pretty and permanentify it all laters promise.  signofcross

I marmaladed it into service last night to bench test it, works fine no issues. It's sharing a 110Wp solar module with a ProStar, the Prostar is charging an AGM while the TS MPPT is charging a spare FLA starter battery. So yes that's 2.9kW of charge controllers sharing 110Wp of PV charging 1.8kWh of lead acid.  ralph

I'll find some suitable porpoise for it soon enough. Mwa...I might run my TS 45 PWM in parallel or as a mains charger, but it's looking more like a diversion controller now.  Cool


 
« Last Edit: August 20, 2016, 07:14:57 PM by Scruff » Logged
Mostie
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« Reply #67 on: August 21, 2016, 02:48:12 PM »

its good to find stuff thats allegedly broken.... but actually isn't   Grin
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2x Solis PV = 1.875 kW, Mitsubishi inverter heat pump. Yorkshire Boiler Stove.
Scruff
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« Reply #68 on: August 21, 2016, 08:59:12 PM »

It was listed (with the wrong spelling) for parts or not working but the description said otherwise.
http://www.ebay.ie/itm/Morningstart-MPPT45-Solar-Charge-Controller-/322198593584?ssPageName=ADME:L:COSI:IE:1123

Worth a punt sometimes as a lot of things listed spares/repairs are just of unknown providence or simple fixes, even if they're completely hooped you can break even harvesting components.  fingers crossed!
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biff
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An unpaid Navitron volunteer who lives off-grid.


« Reply #69 on: August 22, 2016, 12:49:18 AM »

all very strange,
           you can buy a brand new c40 xantrex for less than 120 euros.
               why would you bother with that
                           biff
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An unpaid Navitron volunteer,who has been living off-grid,powered by wind and solar,each year better than the last one.
Scruff
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« Reply #70 on: August 22, 2016, 01:34:08 AM »

Different leagues Biff, because it's not a MorningStar or MPPT, nor can I flip if for 300 just by listing it as working.

I can make a MorningStar "temp. sensor" for 0.10.

The real reason is MorningStar are the only controller/charger I've ever seen take a FLA to specific gravity 1.275 per cell. Why would I trust anything else to do the job on an AGM battery I can't get a hydrometer into where everything else I meet finishes charging at 1.260 when I could just go for something I know to be reliable and compatible for paralleling with my other TriStars?

The TriStar offers superior programmability. Given it accepts 150V input with MPPT I can pull full 45amp battery current (2.16kW) through it instead of being limited to 32amp (1.5kW) on a C40 PWM allowing for lensing overhead.  TriStars have voltage sense wires.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2016, 10:57:26 PM by Scruff » Logged
camillitech
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« Reply #71 on: August 22, 2016, 06:55:35 AM »

Nice find Scruff,

I bought one off Clockman a couple of years ago and swapped it out for a TS45. Normally I wouldn't have bothered for myself but it was as a gift for a mate who let us stay in his house. His 'off grid' PV was maxed out and he'd no more room for panels. The MPPT certainly was an improvement over the PWM, which I kept and used in 'diversion mode', have 5 of them, great bits of kit.

Paul
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'Off grid' since 1985,  Proven 2.5kW, Proven 6kW direct heating, SI6.OH, 800ah Rolls, 4.75kW PV ,4xTS45, Lister HR2 12kW, , Powerspout pelton, Stream Engine turgo, 60 x Navitron toobs and a 1500lt store. Outback VFX3048 and 950ah forklifts for backup,
Scruff
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« Reply #72 on: August 22, 2016, 08:28:25 PM »

Same here, I'm usually a PWM advocate but that's a cost versus return issue so MPPT for the price of PWM is a no brainer.

My biggest problem with running the TS 45 PWM in diversion mode is I don't have a hot water tank.  wackoold
The MPPT brings me up to a collection of 3 + a ProStar (all bargains, bar my first which was RRP).

It's a bit odd though the TS-M is displaying PWM instead of MPPT so I checked the serial interface state report and it's definitely MPPTing...odd... Huh

The MPPT certainly was an improvement over the PWM.

Which firmware version are you running Paul?  If it's on the original you can make it go faster, more better with an update;
v08 "Efficiency improvements at all voltages and power levels"

http://support.morningstarcorp.com/search/?document_section=&search_product=96
[see software tab]

It's easy upgrade the firmware but be sure to follow the instructions exactly because you can brick them if you wander off piste mid update.
Basically you run the MSload software, point it to the firmware update, power off your Array  then TriStar, power on the controller when prompted, give it a minute to complete, job's a good 'un.

The Processor B update is just for the TS 60 MPPT for ethernet etc.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2016, 08:35:37 PM by Scruff » Logged
Scruff
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« Reply #73 on: November 01, 2016, 01:39:10 PM »

Howyas...not much has happened on this system since my last...I'm only home 6 months a year and I usually have other priorities to catch up on when I do get back...I can tell you the system in my avatar works beautifully and can hold it's own wherever it finds itself.  Grin

Here's my powerplant as it stands which is just a wall of unplumbed heroes...well the Soladin is ticking over and the ProStar runs light duty ( tumble lights and lab power).
The Soladin's a bittova scoundrel...it's running at net import a lot of days this weather, part of that is my fault for mounting it's panel in a spot that's shaded until just before midday and the rest is plain bad engineering decisions. See it has a self-consumption of 30W and turns on when the panel is producing 1W...so low and behold it sits there wasting power all morning and some dark evenings this time of year. If I'm leaving the house I just turn it off.
My 110Wp 12v system produces more useful power than it most days in Winter.  Roll Eyes

Bought a new shiney ovenmathing...I heart this appliance  lovefirefox...cooking with light cwaor...so pretty! Cooks slightly faster than our conventional oven for half the power, combats SAD and gorsh but it's a beautiful colour temperature.
Called a halogen oven and I don't know why because the active ingredient is tungsten. Honestly I don't know who designs these things because if it was a 12V filament with a SMPS instead of a mains filament it'd use 40% less power for the same cooking...hrmmm...I smell an invention coming... Grin


* Power Station PreCommission.JPG (316.34 KB, 820x615 - viewed 358 times.)

* Incandescent Oven.JPG (205.35 KB, 384x512 - viewed 350 times.)
« Last Edit: November 01, 2016, 01:54:03 PM by Scruff » Logged
Scruff
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« Reply #74 on: November 01, 2016, 01:40:32 PM »

I've acquired a Studer 6kVA for a reasonable sum of beer tokens. Complete with temp sensor and remote interface (should be standard fume). I gave it a cursory health check; it's an 8 year old that's worked all it's life, DOB: July, 2008. You can't see the "7" highlighted in the date sticker in the photo.


It needs a clean, I'll replace a lot of the smaller electrolytic caps, test the larger ones and consider replacing them if they need it. The battery post needs attention after the monkey who decommissioned it inattentively...it's a sloppy fit now.
I never understand how when a thing is sold as used it seems standard practice to lose the cover screws, battery post bolts and all the RJ cables.. fight...bargain though  extrahappy
I might actually power it up for the first time by January...    


* Patient on the Bench of Healing.JPG (216.25 KB, 461x615 - viewed 440 times.)

* Studer 6kVA DOB.JPG (346.59 KB, 820x615 - viewed 401 times.)
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