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Old 17-04-2013, 03:44   #16
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I understood that MPPT charge controllers is a must nowadays. Affordability is a big issue, but looking all the costs....

Thank you.
Just be aware that you may loose some efficiencies using multiple parallel mppt chargers as unless they have interconnection logic, there will tend to " lazy" units , small difference in set points etc. this is mainly seen in absorption mode , where often only one panel will be doing the work. Of course mppt isn't working here anyway.

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Old 17-04-2013, 03:57   #17
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

For what you´re saying is still better one controleler for each panel than one "big" controller ...


Do you know if the Genasun GV-10 have that capability, the interconnection logic ? Is it really necessary ? Can it generate other problems ?
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Old 17-04-2013, 07:01   #18
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

To be clear, I'm no electrical engineer, but I put my setup together with multiple sources of advice. I used two controllers rather than one larger one for redundancy given a modest price difference. There is no reason a larger, higher capacity controller shouldn't work well.

I do see what Dave describes as a "lazy unit". In absorption, one of the panels is doing the work and the other is hanging around the street corner ogling the passersby. I don't think that's a problem, but perhaps I'm wrong.
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Old 17-04-2013, 14:36   #19
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Maybe , by having those total independent circuits gives you the possibility to remove one, when not cruising.....
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Old 17-04-2013, 15:13   #20
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Separate controllers for each panel will track the Vmp of each panel more accurately. However to track Vmp well requires complex circuitry which has it is considerable self consumption.
It is difficult to theoretically compare the Individual low consumption controllers like Gensun, with more complex MPPT controllers that manage multiple panels.

I suspect the differences are small, but would be interested in anyone with practical experience comparing the two approaches.

Other than (I suspect) small differences in efficiency multiple controllers have the advantage of redundancy, while a single controller has the advantage of better reporting and battery management.

The ultimate may be individual MPPT converters for each panel feeding a single regulation monitor, but the possible advantages are only slight, and the costs probably outweigh the small gains.

Most of the solar market is focused on large domestic solar arrays that are installed in shade free locations feeding a high voltage system.
Boat systems that are much smaller and installed in locations with many, rapidly changing, shadows feeding voltages lower than the panel voltage unfortunately don't warrant much consideration.
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Old 18-04-2013, 03:47   #21
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I thought it was an easier decision ....

I'll keep chrcking ....
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Old 18-04-2013, 11:23   #22
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

[QUOTE=noelex 77;1213332]Separate controllers for each panel will track the Vmp of each panel more accurately. However to track Vmp well requires complex circuitry which has it is considerable self consumption.
It is difficult to theoretically compare the Individual low consumption controllers like Gensun, with more complex MPPT controllers that manage multiple panels.



May be this is stupid, but why not switch off one panel with its controller during night, could this be done.....
may be both if consumption is the problem
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Old 18-04-2013, 15:15   #23
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4fish View Post
Separate controllers for each panel will track the Vmp of each panel more accurately. However to track Vmp well requires complex circuitry which has it is considerable self consumption.
It is difficult to theoretically compare the Individual low consumption controllers like Gensun, with more complex MPPT controllers that manage multiple panels.



May be this is stupid, but why not switch off one panel with its controller during night, could this be done.....
may be both if consumption is the problem
The controllers will enter a sleep mode at night where the consumption is reasonably low so switching the controller off only makes a small difference.

The main consumption is while actually doing the tracking. It's possible to design low power MPPT tracking circuitry, but as a rule it does not track well, wasting power. Better tracking circuitry has a higher self consumption.

So two panels with separate controllers will be able to track the Vmp of each panel independently, but doubling the controllers will increase the self consumption.
Cheaper controllers tend to track Vmp less accurately.

With say 2 x 100 w panels will two low cost cost controllers like Gensun produce more or less power than a single top of the line controller like an outback?
I have not seen any experimental data. I suspect the 2x Gensuns would be slightly better, also cheaper, but with less fine battery management.

Once the total solar got over 400w I think the outback would probably win, but these are just educated guesses.

The differences will be small in either case.
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Old 18-04-2013, 16:09   #24
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

The biggest Solbian SL panel I see is the 90?

I would get a Kyocera panel. The GV10 MPPT controller looks good.

Don't let people here make you crazy: they all want you to buy nothing better than they have themselves Get the biggest panels you can fit (doesn't the Kyocera 140W fit?) and then each with it's own GV10 and you're golden. They will hate you in this thread hahaha

There will be no lazy panels, no worries. Just try to avoid shading as much as possible: see if you can move the boom out to one side to get rid of it's shade.
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Old 18-04-2013, 17:17   #25
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Nick is right. Fit as many watts as you can as the first and most important step.

Don't worry about the advice, however, I have not seen any evidence of "panel envy" on CF

The bigger the solar array, the less generator/engine noise, and the more cold beer there is an anchorage , not many CF members object to that combination.
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Old 19-04-2013, 06:58   #26
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Uff the panels are SP 112, excuse-me for the mistake. There are also 1377,125,112,100 and 50.....
Due to space on the bimini 2 x 112 , and If I need it I will be able to place a third one....the only shadow that I can get is from the Backstay, that is splited and the mast that is about 7 meters to the bow.... the boom will not interfere at all.....

Yeap let´s thing simple....so two panels two small MPPT controllers...KiSS principal right ?
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Old 19-04-2013, 10:34   #27
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Kyocera pannels don't fit and are heavy for the Bimini ... On winter I may let just one panel installed on deck with easy removal ...
That is the reason of using solbian to be able to add power when I cruise in summer with the Bimini , and remove them with the Bimini for the few regattas that I do during winter ....
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Old 19-04-2013, 10:46   #28
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

Okay, your plan sounds good but I do not know the panels. When they get good reviews then sure, why not
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Old 19-04-2013, 11:27   #29
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Thank you all !! Let you know how they work !!
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Old 19-04-2013, 12:25   #30
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Re: Which controller ...last step ...

@4Fish -- Here are some pics of my installation of the Solbian SP-125 panels. They are zipped in place with velcro over the zippers and a sacrificial layer of cloth underneath the edges to preserve the Sunbrella. The cable is run through the bimini frame. You can see the two Genasun controllers in the battery compartment. The setup seems to be working well, but I'm still on the hard so haven't really put serious loads on for more than a couple of hours.
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