Author Topic: Cutting through the BS for alternative power  (Read 28176 times)

Offline Music_Lover

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #120 on: September 06, 2015, 10:02:12 PM »
Nice work. Still waiting for the load shedding though.
Midrand

Offline Rotten Johnny

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #121 on: September 07, 2015, 05:36:00 AM »
THIS was a pain to get sorted. Most of the original Fuchs breakers had to be replaced to make room to get lights and plugs onto a single phase.  Fitting the new breakers on brackets intended for Fuchs breakers from the 60s is an exercise in patience & determination.

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Offline Rotten Johnny

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #122 on: September 21, 2015, 03:21:04 PM »
Quick question to those in the know re inverter operation.  Does it always regenerate AC thus offering a nice clean supply even in pass through or only when drawing on batteries to produce AC?
I like beautiful melodies telling me terrible things -- Tom Waits

Free your mind...and your ass will follow.

Offline Heinrich

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Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #123 on: September 21, 2015, 03:36:27 PM »
Quick question to those in the know re inverter operation.  Does it always regenerate AC thus offering a nice clean supply even in pass through or only when drawing on batteries to produce AC?

nope, only passes ac through while charging.
double conversion UPS systems always gives you a nice clean supply.
someone told me that i can make ice cubes with left over wine.
i am confused, what is left over wine?

Offline chrisc

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Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #124 on: September 21, 2015, 04:47:26 PM »
If you instruct the inverter to always draw from solar, it will not pass through any "utility" power as my one puts it.  You have to make sure that you can replenish whatever you draw from the batteries during the day when the sun shines on the panels.  Right now for instance it is overcast, but not yet raining and the voltage from panels dropped from a maximum of 69 volts to 18 volts.  So 18 x 22 amps = 792 watts and you have to factor in inefficiencies in the charging circuit and batteries

But I expect you know all that, but there might be others who do not
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Offline chrisc

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Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #125 on: April 27, 2016, 03:41:48 PM »
Now winter in the Cape is upon us, the saving from the PV panels is not that great.  In summer (well, from October to March) I was using 8 units a day.  This has crept up to 12.  Many times now during the day the input wattage from the PV panels only just exceeds the useage.  The device goes into Bypass mode at about 6.15pm.  In summer it would be nearer 8.00pm
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Offline andredt

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #126 on: May 03, 2016, 11:30:48 AM »
thin Film panels are much more efficient .
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Offline chrisc

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Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #127 on: May 05, 2016, 04:35:27 PM »
Are they much more expensive than regular panels?
Even duct tape can’t fix stupid… but it can muffle the sound

Offline andredt

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #128 on: May 06, 2016, 04:31:20 AM »
Chris more or less the same price of R8.60 a watt. The problem is they only 165w panels ao you need more. Also string voltages is higher so you need more combiner boxes.
For the love of music.
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Offline Danny Boy

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #129 on: January 17, 2017, 01:00:51 PM »
Given the new  :cr@p: that's happening, I think I need to invest in a backup solution (and perhaps save a couple of bucks month-to-month). Our region is planned for 5 March. I'm interested in going grid-tied, as I don't actually have the budget for any of this. I'd like to run only my 2 PCs and AV equipment (we use almost no household lights) of this.

I'm thinking of doing it in 2 stages:
Stage 1
1x 10x ah battery, adding exactly another one a month or 2 later
1x >=1200w inverter - what is recommended?
1x battery charger
What impact would this have on a electricity bill if the above is permanently connected to the grid?

Stage 2
Does anybody have experience in Ecco's products? I'm tinking about the 40A (or perhaps the 50A - future proofing...) http://www.valueforest.co.za/action.php?loc=South+Africa&sort=sortPriceAsc&key=ecco%20controllers
1x Solar panel, adding as needed (not sure what wattage)

Can someone anybody that has dabbled with is please assist? Any other solutions? I was looking at http://www.takealot.com/mecer-2000vu-line-interactive-ups/PLID34152441, but no long term benefits
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Offline ingenieus

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #130 on: May 16, 2017, 09:23:39 PM »
I have had this idea of cooking up a cheap(ish) pure sine wave converter. Go down to Cash converters and pick up a used car amp - the more powerful, the better. It will need to be class D but AFAIK most of them are. Put together a 50Hz sine wave oscillator on strip board. Plug the output of this to the input of the amp. Hook it up to a car battery. A beautiful sine wave will appear on the speaker terminals. The voltage will be a bit low but this is easily rectified with a suitable transformer used in reverse, i.e. connect the secondary to the car amp. Your mains level will be present on the primary. QED!

I haven't done the math on voltage and current, impedances etcetera but it can be done by any evil genius person with the knowledge needed. The one big flaw in my plan would be that the poor amp will be running flat out all or most of the time. The heat sinks and other componentry might not be up to the challenge. The other flaw is that getting more than a few hundred watt out of such a contraption would be a challenge. Perhaps some form of bridging can be employed.

This being the internet, I am probably not the first to think of this. Thoughts?

A word of warning. Do not try this at home. Your car amp could kill you if you get something wrong.  :stop:

Offline christempler

Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #131 on: January 24, 2018, 10:14:47 PM »
I use an Intel power  1200 VA with 4 off 105 amp hour deep cycle lead acid batteries.
Cost R11,000 from   https://www.maidenelectronics.co.za/Steel-Systems-On-Wheels-AKA-Intellipowersu
It supplies the TV, decoder, AV unit, The extensive alarm system (3 different ones), double 5' led in the sitting room,  another in the kitchen and bedside lamps. Plus a 5 watt light in the bathroom which is permanently on for those night visits!  Good for at least 24 hours if everything  is not used at once. Plus it charges cell phones and tablets along with wireless Internet router. All the above run through it always so when there is an outage life goes on seamlessly.
I had thought about solsr cells but as our outages occur late afternoon the wouldn't be much help.
To give an idea this month we have been out more than ten times usually in excess of 6 hours each.
Still need a genetic for fridges and freezers plus oxygen generator. Gas for cooking.
Being direct on Eksdom is a very expensive luxury.
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Offline chrisc

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Re: Load shedding 14th June 2018
« Reply #132 on: June 14, 2018, 09:38:27 PM »
Load shedding stage 1 on again.  6.00pm south peninsula.  10.00pm southern suburbs   12.00pm Pinelands   2.00am Milnerton.  Thereafter....?

The 6.00pm in Fish Hoek only lasted 20 mins
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Offline chrisc

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Re: Cutting through the BS for alternative power
« Reply #133 on: July 22, 2018, 12:55:48 PM »
In Cape Town (at any rate), Council are determined to make owners of ANY PV panels and electricity generating equipment register their installations and have drawn up a set of guidelines to help you register

Apart from the form. they require a Certificate of Compliance which must also cover Appendix 4 to the SSEG which reads as follows:

Appendix 4:

Suitably interlocked change-over switch for grid-tied hybrid SSEG and a passive standby UPS utilised as off-grid hybrid SSEG

a. This includes interrupters, transfer switches, bypass switches, isolation switches and tie switches.

b. The switch shall provide feedback of its position to the inverter/charger so that if the contacts fail to operate or malfunction [e.g. fused-closed contacts, inadvertent energising of the change-over switch coil, etc.], use of the inverter mode will be impossible.

c. The requirements of SANS 10142-1 Section 7.12.2.5 are applicable.

d. It shall be a separate, controllable switch, compatible with the applicable electrical service conditions and to the performance requirements of the passive standby UPS, in accordance with SANS / IEC 60947-6-1 and the following product specifications:  Static transfer systems (STS): SANS / IEC 62310-3.  Automatic transfer systems (ATS): SANS / IEC 60947-6-1.  Manual isolation, tie and transfer switches (MTS): SANS / IEC 60947-3.

e. The switch shall have a rated lightning impulse withstand voltage (BIL) of 4 kV at 1,2/50 µs in accordance with SANS / IEC 60947-1 (Tables H.1 and 12).

f. Characteristics of the transfer shall be break-before-make (open transition) – no transient cross-conduction during transfer. The transfer time of the switch shall be ≥ 20 ms.

g. The contactor gap of the switch shall exceed 4 mm in accordance with SANS 60950- 1, S 2.10.3.3 and Table 2K for a fixed installation with overvoltage category 2. Note: The Certificate of Compliance with the accompanied test report must provide detail of the suitably interlocked change-over switch as above in Sections 3 and 4 of the SANS 10142-1 Test report.


Links for the grid-tied and off grid systems are:

The form for grid-tied is here - http://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Municipal-services/Electricity/apply-for-authorisation-for-grid-tied-sseg

And for off-grid, it is here - http://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Municipal-services/Electricity/apply-for-authorisation-for-off-grid-or-standalone-sseg

I duly completed the form, but needed an electrician to inspect the system and issue a COC.  The first two electricians I contacted had no idea whatsoever about low voltage systems and both suggested that it is not necessary to register.  However, CT Council are adamant that it is and I got the name of a qualified and informed electrician from the Electrical Contractors Association
Even duct tape can’t fix stupid… but it can muffle the sound