光伏阵列.jpg

鲍勃科迪改造了阿克塔教育农场的离网光伏系统

先前安装的系统由以下组件组成:太阳能电池板、电池、充电控制器、接线和答录机。新系统为新的答录机以及堆肥厕所的风扇提供动力。该系统为股东提供了一种在食品季节联系 AEF 的途径。

此前,电话答录机没有电源,老股东或感兴趣的股东也无法留言。我们评估了光伏系统;更换任何损坏的部件(例如旧接线、损坏的电池等)并添加组件(例如逆变器)以改善系统的运行。通过改造光伏系统的过程,我们为阿克塔教育农场现任和未来的主管编写了一本“如何操作”手册。

有关该系统的故障排除、维修、测试和维护的项目,请访问AEF 光伏系统/故障排除

以前的系统

拟议的时间表

物品拟定日期见面日期?
确定系统规模和定价组件以供客户和 CCAT 批准2008年3月11日是的!
预算转化为 CCAT2008 年 3 月 12 日是的!
将光伏系统现有线路更换为新线路,安装逆变器、新电池并进行测试2008年3月29日是的!
创建系统用户手册/维护日志2008年4月16日是的!

标准

标准约束成功?
成本400 美元以下是的
易于维护/文档易于其他人维护并清晰记录。是的
安全的触电机会最小——无裸露接线是的
具有教育意义/可供所有 AEF 成员使用应答机致力于为农场/股东提供便捷的访问工具是的
耐用性持续多年,持续教育工具是的

文献综述

关于光伏设计、安装和维护有大量的讨论和写作。该系统未并网,因此我们重点关注为我们的其他项目审查的相同文献:

Engr 305 太阳能学习站可在此处访问文献综述和此处光伏

组件及其功能

AEF wiring diagram.JPG

1-面板
Collection of PV cells designed and installed on the panel depending on serial or parallel configuration
2-Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) Sealed Battery
Storage of DC Electrical Current.
3-Charge Controller/Low Voltage Disconnect (LVD)
Regulates battery voltage and controls the charging rate, or the state of charge, for batteries. LVD shuts system off when voltage drops below 11.6 v and turns it back on after the battery has charged to 12.6 v.
4-Inverter
Changes direct current (DC)generated by the Panel to alternating current (AC)used by households.
Load (Answering Machine)
Any electrical component within a circuit that draws power from that circuit.
Most loads can be turned on and off, such as a light bulb or a refrigerator.
Loads are either AC or DC.
Fuses
When a current exceeds a fuse´s rated amperage, the circuit opens and stops all current flow. When a fuse has "blown", it must be replaced.
Meter
A gauge that allows you to see from where you are pulling your power, and how much power is being drawn from the loads.
5-Outlet
Outlet to run AC appliances-answering machine

Operating/Maintenance Instructions for components

Answering Machine
The answering machine is a used ATT 1715 and the user's manual is on-line
Charge Controller/Low Voltage Disconnect
The charge controller is a SunSaver 10 Amp Unit and the user's manual is on-line
Inverter
The Inverter is a Xantrex XPower Inverter 400 and the user's manual is on-line

System Installation

After assessing what components could be re-used from the old system and answering machine (Fig 1, 2, 3, 4), we got together to plan out the re-installation. Cody, being better at tough installation tasks, rebuilt the battery box (Fig 5), re-wired and attached the charge controller and inverter(Fig 7,8,and 9), and coached Bob as he re-wired the AC portion of the system. Bob ran Romex wiring from the inverter to the AC plug box. He also wired the AC outlet as it previously had direct DC wiring (Fig 4). Bob re-wired the compost fan to protect anyone from getting shocked if they fell asleep while on the toilet (Fig 13). We replaced all old wiring with new wiring and fastened with the existing hangers.

We were careful to have all components either covered from the elements or away from incidental human contact. This part was actually easier than the learning station as we could work at the same time instead of one at a time because of space. Once we were done and plugged in the new answering machine, it all worked perfectly and it looked good(Fig 10, 11, and 12)! For awhile...

System Installation Photos

System Testing, Troubleshooting, Precautions and Maintenance

For a project on the troubleshooting, repairing, testing and maintaining of this system visit AEF photovoltaic system/Troubleshooting

First we assessed the current system and figured out which components were still good and which ones were bad. The battery was five years old, would not hold a charge, and needed to be replaced. The charge controller still worked, but we decided to replace the old one with a new charge controller with a low voltage disconnect (LVD). This prevents the battery from being discharged to levels that decrease its life.

Using the old wiring coming from the solar panel, we tested the voltage coming from the panel to the charge controller. Only 1.79v were coming through so our initial thought was a bad panel. CCAT had some panels and were willing to donate one in case the original was bad. On a sunny day the panels in their Solar Trailer were all tested and one very similar to the existing panel was donated. But, it turned out that it was the old wiring. After removing the old wiring and testing the panel, it showed us 19.5v. The lifespan of a panel at full voltage is 15 - 25 years and after that the voltage output only slightly decreases.

After the system was completely installed, we tested the answering machine and everything worked. We were able to leave messages on the answering machine for a week before the system turned off. It now has been a full week and the system has not yet turned on, we tested our system at every point checking to make sure that our wiring was done correctly. The wiring was determined good and now we are testing individual components. The inverter worked when hooked up to battery, so now we're testing the battery to make sure it will hold a charge. All components are new so it is difficult to troubleshoot a new product being bad. After charging the battery up with a battery charger a load test was performed to make sure the voltage didn't drop rapidly. The battery was determined good, so now its down to the charge controller and/or the panel. With the battery charged we hooked it back up to the system and it worked again for a week. By bringing another battery in and hooking it up directly to the panel(around the charge controller), we were able to determine that the panel and wiring are good and eliminate them from scrutiny. We are investigating the charge controller. At this point its a matter of patience, time, and more trouble shooting if the problem persists.

List of steps to take when testing this system:

  1. Test system meters-Test on a device where you know the voltage and verify it is working and correct
  2. Array/panel voltage-Use a DC voltmeter/ampmeter to measure the voltage/amperage(in full sun) in an array/panel and record
  3. Battery voltage-carefully measure the voltage of the battery before and after connecting and record
  4. Check status indicators on charge controller and inverter if available
  5. Check all wiring to see if any is live by testing voltage and/or current at all points before and after a component
  6. Check all terminals and wires for loose, broken, corroded or burnt connections or components
  7. Make sure charge controller is clean
  8. Fire up the system under full sun and re-test each point and component for common voltage/amperage
  9. Turn on the answering machine!

Reference: Maintenance and operation of stand-alone Photovoltaic systems (1991). Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87185-5800 157

Troubleshooting Document For the AEF

This is an overview/basic troubleshooting document for many of the components of the AEF solar system including the answering machine.

ANSWERING MACHINE
If trouble occurs, turn off then back on. If problem persists, take home to try in different outlet. For programming, see enclosed user manual.
CHARGE CONTROLLER
For hook up and wiring instructions, please see enclosed diagram. For basic troubleshooting, test all three connection points with a voltmeter. If they are bad, it may need replacement. If they are good (have all the same voltage), the problem is most likely something else.
BATTERY
Check all points for corrosion and test each terminal with a voltmeter. If the voltage is below 12 volts and/or the Low Voltage Disconnect light is lit on the Charge Controller, unplug the answering machine and wait until you have two hours of full sun, then re-test. If not charging, the battery may be bad.
INVERTER
Using a voltmeter, test points on both sides of the inverter(one is AC and the other DC), during full sun if possible. For more troubleshooting, see the enclosed manual.
PANEL
Test panel by disconnecting from charge controller during full sun and using a voltmeter to test the voltage. It should be around 18 volts DC.

ALL COMPONENTS BUT THE BATTERY HAVE MANUALS ON-LINE AND ON-SITE.

Precautions

  • Do not touch any of the wires with your hands or a metal tool when the system is connected.
  • Read any material in our "how-to" packet before attempting to fix. The "how-to" packet has the components and diagrams above, a hard
  • Only let someone that knows what they are doing repair or change the system or its wiring.

Maintenance

The following are maintenance logs for the AEF PV System and are recommended to be filled out monthly.

Budget

System Cost Table
ComponentCost
AGM 12 Volt 75 Amp Hour Battery$160.95
400 Watt Inverter$42.90
Charge Controller with Low Voltage Disconnect$69.95
15 Amp Fused Outlet$13.50
24 feet of Romex wiring$48.00
25 feet of 10 gauge wiring$12.25
7 Feet of 12 gauge wiring$2.45
Answering Machine$3.82
Total$353.82

Update October 2013

For an ENGR 308 class assignment, me and my partner Drew collected information on the Bayside Park Farm's projects listed on Appropedia and learned enough to update each project. After speaking with farmers Jayme and Leandra, we learned that the photovoltaic system still has all components hooked up (Fig 14&15), but is no longer in use. Since installed in April, 2008 the system was used to power the answering machine and a compost fan. Then was used to charge a battery for the solar water heater after it was installed in May, 2010. It was all working well, however, Leandra told me that it was not providing enough energy as they needed anymore and they became hooked up to the grid this last May 2013 when the solar water heater was dismantled and the new wash station was built. They are looking to see the arrays back in use soon as they served them well over the last ~5 years.

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