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Author Topic: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications  (Read 167614 times)

glort

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #735 on: July 19, 2018, 04:57:30 PM »

You have been infected badly Ed, NEW panels! That's something I have never got .

I like the way you mounted the 2 panels on your shed. I have been thinking of the same sort of thing myself for the back wall of the house to shade it from the Summer afternoon sun Primarily and use panels to get the power bonus rather than just using blinds that give no return.

Probably better you are roof mounting, may make the panels more " Miscreant" proof.  You'd have to run an active from the mains to your ground mount otherwise in order to keep the panels put.

For setting things up and general Decision making, I found the PVwatts site very good. You can punch in all your parameters and theoreticals and see what the different results are.  I have found the calculation on the site very close to reality here and the numbers they predict are very reliable.

10o off north won't make a lot of difference to your Yeild.  10o off tilt will make even less difference.

I was thinking today about the possible effects of laying some light coloured material in front of my panels which are presently sitting on the ground on racks I built.  I have some light coloured tin we use for fencing here and I was thinking that maybe laying that in front of the panels would reflect up some more light and may improve output. How much would be the question. I don't have enough for an array and I don't want to kill the grass, again, by putting anything on it.

Would be interesting to know what sort of improvement something like that could make though.

EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #736 on: July 20, 2018, 08:50:25 AM »
Hey Glort,

The 2 small panels are kind of "experimental" units, they will be used for playing and one to be used to hook up to the little blow gennie as it has a 24v solar input... I might use this little unit to power a linear motor or two and do the trimming on the panels, depending on what I find to be the laziest way to do things...

Roof mounting is about the only way to go for me, with the miscreant thievery and other wild animals (as well as regular yard "target practice") they wouldn't last long at ground level...

Regarding yield, I simply work to the theory that the most oblique angle to the sun, the better... 10 deg off ideal doesn't seem to make a big difference practically, but it does add up... I am glad to see that the panels have almost a non-reflective type appearance, bouncing little off at sunrise and sunset...

Watch out for steering too much light and heat particularly onto your panels via reflection, I think it would be detrimental, but not sure... one of the lads in the know can probably give us a bit of insight... I have often thought to myself that a basic parabolic reflector made of thin ali either side of the panel good give a good bit of extra morn/eve yield... These thoughts came about after cladding the flattish roofs of 3x dormer windows with 1mm polished ali to reflect the heat.... did the work during the height of summer, around midday, wearing but a T-shirt and short pants.... Well, I was in agony for the next week due to an overcooked sausage and potatoes.... Hilariously funny for the family but not for me!

Enough rambling....

Keep it shining...

Cheers
Ed
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BruceM

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #737 on: July 20, 2018, 03:52:34 PM »
Thanks for mentioning PV Watts, Glort.  Interesting web site.

Many schemes of adding reflectors to increase PV output were done back when PV was so expensive.  The heat does lower voltage, but still it will increase total output.  The cost and maintenance of the reflector is the bugger.
I don't recall the use of a white (good reflection but diffusing) surface for PV.  It does work fine for flat plate solar hot water collectors.

I've thought about adding a reflector to my solar hot water panel, to increase gain in winter, but my backup gas bill ($15/mo. for 3 months)  is so low I can't justify the cost.  The wind here in spring and our notorious "dust devils" (mini tornadoes) make large lightweight surfaces problematic.

I think using PV as an added shade, privacy fence, or other architectural feature is a great idea and will no doubt be much more common in the future.  Home/roof design to optimize the local peak power season gain seems also likely. 

EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #738 on: July 23, 2018, 09:10:56 AM »
Hey Guys....

Managed to install the solar inverter and hook it to household circuits, as well as get it in the same line as the little auto start genset we have...

Didn't come out too badly, and found a nook that, while it is "exposed" to day to day operations, is out of the way and readily accessible as well, just outside the back door under the back porch and protected from the elements too....

Explanations:

1st pic: That's the inverter with the incoming mains/outgoing 220/solar panel isolator box above it.

2nd:Grey box with black lid is a manual changeover switch to isolate the gensets, the orange box is the auto changeover to switch to genset when the genset comes online, it has an auto current limiting feature that switches back to utility should the load on the genset be more than 16A for 30 seconds. Below the orange boxes are an incoming plug point from utility, a plug point from TM1 and one from TM2. Currently TM1 is disconnected and TM2 is feeding the auto switch over when he gets started.

3rd: Overall view (Starting to get a bit cramped...) with a peek in the mid left of the pic showing location of pic4. (In the lower RHS, you can see the top of the upper battery tray, there is another tray below it.)

4th:1st plug point is incoming power from db board, well after TM1/2's circuit, this feeds power to the small auto start genset. 2nd plug point is from the little auto start gennie. 3rd plug point is from the inverter/solar setup... The units are daisy-chained here so any unit can be manually removed from the chain, the black plug in the third plug point is a return to main the db board in the house... this input feeds critical circuits like lights, security system, dvr etc....

Daaaaamn... I better write a manual for the house, I don't think I will remember it all in a year or two!

Cheers
Ed

PS: Yes Glort, the pictures are crappy quality.... But the Canon was lying on the dining room table and it would have taken a whole 30 seconds to fetch it.... way quicker than typing this PS out come to think of it....
« Last Edit: July 23, 2018, 09:31:21 AM by EdDee »
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cujet

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #739 on: July 26, 2018, 01:05:06 AM »
I'm simply here to say, this is an epic thread!

I've been enjoying the very wordy and very interesting posts.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 01:07:33 AM by cujet »
People who count on their fingers should maintain a discreet silence

EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #740 on: July 26, 2018, 08:29:06 AM »
Awww.....Cujet.... A fan!!

I just want to give you a big hug!!

Love you long time!

Cheers
Ed
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glort

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #741 on: July 26, 2018, 11:18:53 AM »

Hey!
I'm a fan too!

I think it's great to read post's that are informative, ongoing and of substantial volume.

The hug would be OK but even though I have never been to the orient, I think the Love you long time part would be more than I was worthy of and you should save that for someone else..... preferably of the female persuasion.  :embarassed:

EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #742 on: July 31, 2018, 11:38:55 AM »
Hey Glort....

U don't count.... U are as close in mannerisms and outlook that I rate you as family..... Sorry to drop your gene pool by the drastic amount I have, by including myself into your bloodline.....

They say a picture is worth 1000 words... So here you go Glort, a post to rival your own!

The solar install is just about complete to the point of "next upgrade", the only job left to do is to raise the last bank of panels to the correct angle, which can only be done after I lift the blow gennie another 3m by extending its mast... The guy wires at the current height get in the way of the panel bank....

These pics are of frames lying folded down then erected on the roof of the workshop...

Nuff sed....

Cheers
Ed
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EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #743 on: July 31, 2018, 11:42:39 AM »
Another 3000 Words in pictures....

Panels in place, connected up and starting to duct pixies through the little pipes in single file....

(The frames/struts are made of 304 stainless, Tigged together where needed, all support bolts are stainless too..)

Enough rambling...

Cheers
Ed
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glort

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #744 on: July 31, 2018, 12:41:54 PM »

Be honored to have you as a family member Ed! Lord knows our gene pool could do with some improving but as i'm now last of the line and it stops with me, maybe a good thing.

How did you get the panels up on the roof? Merely Lug them up or did you fabricobble some mathematically genius contraption together to hoik them up there with the exertion of your pinky Finger?

I'm still not sure how to get them up on my steep tin roof. Was going to use mates Cherry Picker but he reckons it won't do the angle I need.
would you like to come to Oz for a weekend Ed to show us convicts how it's done?  All the steaks, Praws on the barbie and beer you can drink ( Beer AFTER you get off the roof!)

Here you are not legally allowed to put up your own panels, I think your pics and description clearly show why.
NO installer here would ever do such a good job with stainless racking and welding it together.  I have got loads of the racking and buckets full of the fixings they use from systems I have bought and it's all crap. in the old days they used gal unistrut which is strong and soled with decent bolts but now they are using M6 screws on everything.

I have seen the way they do the wiring too from stuff I have been given with systems. Just shake my head.  The other small matter here is it is widely known if you follow the regulations to the letter, your install could be deemed non compliant. There are several conflicting rules and regulations that if you set a system to meet them, they violate another.  There is also a thing here about having to have a disconnect close as possible to the DC source.
The point closest to the DC source is of course on the roof.  got a problem, need to shut the panel feed down, no problems, just grab your ladder while the
switch is on fire up there as the fire brigades are complaining of the dozens of callouts the get and shut it off. Easy.

Fire brigade has mandated any solar installations on their premises MUST have the DC shut off at ground level and within reach of a normal person and the DC breakers must do both sides and be double the required rating.  Me being a non qualified person Put the DC disconnects with the other breakers and AC switches in the main panel and automatically had a breaker on both poles of about 4X the current rating of the array before I even heard of this.

Yeah, good reason why professionals only can do it here. The non qualified like you would do it so much better and lift the standards too high!


38ac

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #745 on: July 31, 2018, 01:03:32 PM »
Another 3000 Words in pictures....



Enough rambling...

Cheers
Ed

By the time I got 3000 legible words typed earth would be past solar and on to matter/anti matter power generation, pictures are great!  LOL
Ramble on please. I dont post on this thread but the read is first rate!
Butch
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EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #746 on: July 31, 2018, 01:07:51 PM »
Hey Glort....

Sheeeesh.....Me as a family member and you reckon it would improve your gene pool...... Daaaaamn Boy!..... You must have a low regard for your bloodline!! (Most of mine disowned me!!)

Panel lifting wasn't bad, there are only 12 and its barely 3m up.... I knelt on the roof and my housemate passed them up to me... They're only about 30kg each...I think... Went nice and quick, we had to pull finger to do it before the midday breeze came up, that's what I was worried about....

Once the racking is up, the panels are a doddle... Just time consuming to bolt them in, but a small battery drill wif a 10mm socket does wonders...

I still have my concerns about the panel mountings, albeit they are quite substantial... The rear of the panels face a downward slope which is very wind prone - Lets see what the next gale does!!

Currently I only have a DC breaker at the inverter, I will need to upgrade it as it is only about 20 to 25A, no matter for the moment, good enough, but when I wire more load to the inverter I will need to replace it... I must have a scratch round, I might have a decently capable 80 to 100A industrial switch which will do the job....

Thanks for the compliments!!

Appreciated!!

Cheers
Ed

PS - Arrange the flight and I'll be there to lend a hand for sure!! (I was thinking of visiting a mate in NZ - But he's moved onto a little blow boat.... A bit cramped for him and I don't want to stress him out!!)
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glort

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #747 on: July 31, 2018, 02:09:54 PM »

Your panels if in series will only be about 10Max. I have 16A breakers on mine and they have been fine. I don't think using heavier breakers helps much with the DC arcing.  I have 2 breakers on mine, one for each Pole.  I can switch them on and off under load with no problems.  I have some proper isolators for the house which I will be mounting at ground level The rest of the install is not compliant, not going to try and comply with a stupid reg like having the isolator where no one can get at the thing.

I have seen a wiring diagram for using an AC 3 phase breaker on DC. The feed goes from one side to the other to the 3rd breaker so when they are switched off, all 3 gaps activate at once making a bigger path for the arc to travel.  Seems a viable setup.


EdDee

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #748 on: July 31, 2018, 04:06:36 PM »
Hey Glort...

The panels are in 4 banks of 3 panels each, these banks are in parallel so a max of around 40 to 50 amps will be evident at best season... Hence the need to upgrade the panel trips.... The panels are rated 335W at around 30V, so I guess, more accurately, the current will be around 11.5A per bank x4 = 46A....

Circuit breakers I am not really worried about, I am sure I will scrounge up a few serviceables, hopefully not too ugly so they don't make the breakout box look too crappy.....

DC is funny stuff... I was playing with it on the weekend..... I like it much more than AC... I grabbed hold of the panel buss bars a few times whilst they were idling at around 95V and didn't even feel a tickle - try that with AC and you will be flat on your back... I am quite lucky in that since an early age, my skin (on my hands anyway) has been quite dry, so my skin resistance is quite high... Up to about 100VAC I can touch and get a close guess as to voltage flowing, above that I steer clear... DC I can guestimate to about 130V with no discomfort.... Not to be tried with wet hands while lounging in the wet bar I must add......

On circuit breakers, as long as they have a good, quick, reliable, repeatable and widish points opening, they are more likely to last on DC... The slower the gaps open, the more arc, the quicker they burn out with use.... The main reason for "series-ing" the contacts, is, if they start to burn closed, there is another one in the string to break the circuit. There is no advantage in individual small gaps, as the plasma in the arc forms pretty much a 0 ohm resistance when it presents itself, the gaps are not cumulative to any large degree, but, a single large gap of 6 times the individual smaller gaps as is present on a standard breaker would require something like 40x the energy to sustain the arc..... Easy way round it is simply to wire up the circuit breaker and dangle it in a container of dry oil, its amazing how much more can be switched with puny little contacts and a bit of cooling and plasma reduction.....

Enough BS Rambling from me....

Cheers
Ed
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BruceM

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Re: The Listeroid Chronicles-WMO and Other Listeroid Modifications
« Reply #749 on: July 31, 2018, 05:14:11 PM »
I also like working with DC..and find the discomfort about 1/4 that of AC for any given voltage.  I got a good hit of 140VDC a couple days ago- I was rewiring some power distribution for an inverter jury rig test, switched of the breaker and forgot about the capacitors in a big facility filter used for my house power. (No bleed resistor, intentionally, for an off grid battery power situation.) Not really painful but reminded me that I'd screwed up and had forgotten to discharge the line!

I'd like to take exception with the notion that multiple gaps make no difference in arc extinguishing.  Cascading contacts are often employed for high voltage and current, DC rated breakers. There is more going on that just more chances to not have contacts welded shut. (Although that would certainly help for on time only.)  Midnight Solar makes DC rated breakers that I use regularly. The  300V version is just two 150V breakers in series...which makes me confident that total arc length does matter. Both the 150 and the 300V DC rated breakers are also rated for use as a switch, meaning rated for decent contact life with many, many openings.  I haven't found a comprehensive engineering primer on the physics of DC breakers, but if you've seen one that makes you think multiple gaps are not doing what I think they are, let me know, please.  Permanent magnets are commonly employed on higher power/voltage DC switches and relays to bend the arc to lengthen it's path, which I find intriguing.

There are DIN rail type DC rated breakers here in the US, with 150 and 300V ratings. They are cheap, so I use those instead of going to the work of testing AC rated breakers.  If I couldn't get DC breakers I'd have to get serious about testing at above intended voltage to make sure, or have some reliable data from someone else's testing.  I fried a $200 collection of six different heavy duty AC only rated switches on 120VDC one afternoon, switching a 4 amp load of lamps.  Same load, Leviton rotary lamp type replacement switch, no trouble at all. 

I am seeing more higher voltage (125V) DC rated switches at Digikey now, just got a small toggle switch for capacitor discharge for my inverter install for a few bucks.  DC is starting it's comeback.