Search In
• More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Solar Panel for lamps and charging phone and laptops

Recommended Posts

Posted · Original PosterOP

So I have 2 laptops, 2 fans 1 small and 1 a stand up IDK how much power it needs or Amps tbh, 1 receiver and 1 router, everything else is handled. I live in southeast asia so a tropical island? half a year is sunny and rainy. How much WP and Battery do I need to power these, 1 of the laptop most likely about 24/7.

Share on other sites

It's complicated.

You can use a power meter like this one to measure the average power consumption of a device: https://amzn.to/2F9XfGX

A laptop would probably average around 20 to 40 watts while browsing the internet, watching Youtube and so on. You can get a hint about the maximum power consumption of the laptop by looking at the power adapter - if it says 65w or 18.5v 3.5A  (18v x 3.5A = 65w) then you know the maximum that laptop will ever consume is 65 watts, plus around 5 watts (due to losses inside the power supply, nothing is perfectly efficient)

A fan ... it depends on the motor the fan has, but I would say maybe 10-30 watts?

A receiver shouldn't consume more than around 20 watts on average, and a router shouldn't consume more than around 5-10 watts.

The problem is that you need to pick a solar panel which will produce a voltage that will vary a lot, depending on how much sun rays hits the panel. So for example, the voltage could be between let's say 15 volts and 20 volts throughout the day.

You need a box that would convert this energy into a steady flow, a steady voltage of let's say 13.2v, pumping the energy into a lead acid battery (like the ones in an UPS, a bit different than the ones used on cars)

This conversion is not perfect, but it can be let's say up to 95% efficient ...

Next, since you have various devices that are mains powered (from 120v or 230v) you need an inverter, a device which takes 11...13v from the lead acid battery or from the solar panel and convert this DC voltage to AC voltage.

Such inverters also have some conversion losses, let's say 90% or better conversion.  Now you have AC voltage and you can power a device, but that device's power supply is not 100% efficient at converting the AC voltage back to DC voltage the device uses with great efficiency.

Here's a fictional example.

You buy a 100w solar panel like this "best seller" Renogy 100w one : https://amzn.to/2Oa5JlB

If you check the datasheet here , you can see that in best scenario when sun hits just right and panel produces most power, the voltage will be 17.9v and you may get close to 100w - for simplicity let's say the panel produces 100w.

So now you have 100w of power, but at 17.9v - You need a MPPT controller which takes this and produces the voltage that's good for charging a lead acid battery.

Here's one that's made by same company (or branded by them) and seems to have good reviews: Renogy Rover 20 Amp 12V/24V MPPT Solar Charge Controller Battery Regulator Compatible with Lithium, Sealed, Gel, and Flooded Batteries Bluetooth Module

This particular model can take in up to 260w worth of solar panels, so basically two of the solar panels I linked above, either in series (because the maximum input voltage is listead at 100v, so with two panels in series you'd have up to around 40v input voltage) or connected in parallel.

This controller sends 13v or whatever voltage is needed into the battery and also makes it available on its terminals, and it does this with very high efficiency, so let's keep things simple and say 100w are available.

So, you can connect to the LOAD terminal an inverter, which takes this 12-13v and creates 120v AC or 230v AC with let's say 90% efficiency or higher.

This means that if 100w go inside the inverter, 90w goes to devices and 10w is lost as heat in the inverter.

So now these 90w are available to be used.

Let's say you have a laptop which has a power adapter that's rated for maximum 65w but averages around 30w when you're using it.

This means that the power supply takes around 35w out of those 90w and creates the lower voltage the laptop needs - it's more than 30w because this adapter is also not that efficient.

Now keep in mind that all this assumes power isn't taken from the battery itself. If you have a big battery which has some charge in it, the controller will take the energy from the solar panel AND the energy from the battery and make it available to the inverter. So even if you have just one 100w solar panel, the battery can also provide let's say another 100w for some amount of time, let's say 1h (depending on the total capacity of the battery), after which it would take hours for the battery to get charged to the full capacity

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
6 hours ago, mariushm said:

It's complicated.

You can use a power meter like this one to measure the average power consumption of a device: https://amzn.to/2F9XfGX

A laptop would probably average around 20 to 40 watts while browsing the internet, watching Youtube and so on. You can get a hint about the maximum power consumption of the laptop by looking at the power adapter - if it says 65w or 18.5v 3.5A  (18v x 3.5A = 65w) then you know the maximum that laptop will ever consume is 65 watts, plus around 5 watts (due to losses inside the power supply, nothing is perfectly efficient)

A fan ... it depends on the motor the fan has, but I would say maybe 10-30 watts?

A receiver shouldn't consume more than around 20 watts on average, and a router shouldn't consume more than around 5-10 watts.

The problem is that you need to pick a solar panel which will produce a voltage that will vary a lot, depending on how much sun rays hits the panel. So for example, the voltage could be between let's say 15 volts and 20 volts throughout the day.

You need a box that would convert this energy into a steady flow, a steady voltage of let's say 13.2v, pumping the energy into a lead acid battery (like the ones in an UPS, a bit different than the ones used on cars)

This conversion is not perfect, but it can be let's say up to 95% efficient ...

Next, since you have various devices that are mains powered (from 120v or 230v) you need an inverter, a device which takes 11...13v from the lead acid battery or from the solar panel and convert this DC voltage to AC voltage.

Such inverters also have some conversion losses, let's say 90% or better conversion.  Now you have AC voltage and you can power a device, but that device's power supply is not 100% efficient at converting the AC voltage back to DC voltage the device uses with great efficiency.

Here's a fictional example.

You buy a 100w solar panel like this "best seller" Renogy 100w one : https://amzn.to/2Oa5JlB

If you check the datasheet here , you can see that in best scenario when sun hits just right and panel produces most power, the voltage will be 17.9v and you may get close to 100w - for simplicity let's say the panel produces 100w.

So now you have 100w of power, but at 17.9v - You need a MPPT controller which takes this and produces the voltage that's good for charging a lead acid battery.

Here's one that's made by same company (or branded by them) and seems to have good reviews: Renogy Rover 20 Amp 12V/24V MPPT Solar Charge Controller Battery Regulator Compatible with Lithium, Sealed, Gel, and Flooded Batteries Bluetooth Module

This particular model can take in up to 260w worth of solar panels, so basically two of the solar panels I linked above, either in series (because the maximum input voltage is listead at 100v, so with two panels in series you'd have up to around 40v input voltage) or connected in parallel.

This controller sends 13v or whatever voltage is needed into the battery and also makes it available on its terminals, and it does this with very high efficiency, so let's keep things simple and say 100w are available.

So, you can connect to the LOAD terminal an inverter, which takes this 12-13v and creates 120v AC or 230v AC with let's say 90% efficiency or higher.

This means that if 100w go inside the inverter, 90w goes to devices and 10w is lost as heat in the inverter.

So now these 90w are available to be used.

Let's say you have a laptop which has a power adapter that's rated for maximum 65w but averages around 30w when you're using it.

This means that the power supply takes around 35w out of those 90w and creates the lower voltage the laptop needs - it's more than 30w because this adapter is also not that efficient.

Now keep in mind that all this assumes power isn't taken from the battery itself. If you have a big battery which has some charge in it, the controller will take the energy from the solar panel AND the energy from the battery and make it available to the inverter. So even if you have just one 100w solar panel, the battery can also provide let's say another 100w for some amount of time, let's say 1h (depending on the total capacity of the battery), after which it would take hours for the battery to get charged to the full capacity

so i just check my laptop charger 1.4A and 2.31A it says 45W on Wide Range Input and idk what that means. so if i have a solar panel lets say 50Wp 6V and i connect it to a controller the average is 4,6V idk tbh? idk a good controller or not cause i haven't research it a lot, most say its like 75% on cheap ones (i dont really have a lot of money) so it takes 4,6V and give it to the batteries? and use an inverter to make it usable with idk what effeciency? is that correct?

Share on other sites

If the 50w panel has a nominal voltage of 6v, that means the panel will output around 6v at its most optimum moment, when sun is very bright and there's no clouds and dust on the panel and so on. It may output slightly more voltage in some cases, and lower voltage when it's cloudy and so on.

Some of these cheaper panels often have a dc-dc converter on the panel which takes the energy and converts it to 5v and puts it on one or several usb ports so you can power usb devices directly from it.  Such panels will have 1 or more usb connectors, each capable of maximum 2-3 A (around 10-15w) per connector.

If your panel only has wires coming out of it, then you need either a MPPT controller that supports 6v, or you can find a dc-dc converter which would convert this low voltage to 12v or 24v or whatever voltage you could use to charge a battery.

some battery charger that would take a low voltage and charge a lead acid battery or you could connect TWO such panels in series to get a voltage of 12v and then use a controller designed to work with 12v panels.

For example, this is a charger which can charge lithium batteries and needs a voltage between 11v and 18v to charge batteries connected to it (voltage needs to be above the lithium battery voltage you connected to it): https://hobbyking.com/en_us/imax-b6-50w-5a-charger-discharger-1-6-cells-genuine.html

So if you have a 3S battery pack that needs approx. 3 x 4.2v = 12.6v to charge, the charger needs more than that to work.

So you'd have a solar panel -> 4.5v..8v / 50w max  -> dc-dc converter to 13-14v -> battery charger -> lithium battery -> inverter 12v -> 120v AC -> devices

Not ideal, not recommended, too messy.

Wide range means the power supply can work with wide range of input voltages, it means it would probably run with anything between around 90v AC and 240v AC, and will output the correct voltage of 12v or 18v or whatever your laptop needs, up to the power supply's rating of 45w.

That 45w means that's the limit of the power supply - your laptop could use that much for example if you're playing games on your laptop while your laptop battery is also charging at the same time. If your laptop's battery is fully charged and your laptop is still plugged in, your laptop will average less, let's say 30-35w when you're playing games. If you're just browsing pages, watching Youtube, typing a document, most likely the power consumption will be around 10-20w - it depends on the brightness of your lcd screen, on the power management plan you set

Ideally, for such laptops, you would look into buying a "car laptop charger" or a laptop charger that works with 12v, for example from a car's cigarette lighter... because this way you don't have to use an inverter to convert 12v to 120v AC and then have the laptop adapter convert 120v AC back to whatever the laptop needs.

You can then connect that laptop power adapter directly to the battery that's charged from the solar panel and get higher efficiency.

Share on other sites
Posted (edited) · Original PosterOP
33 minutes ago, mariushm said:

So you'd have a solar panel -> 4.5v..8v / 50w max  -> dc-dc converter to 13-14v -> battery charger -> lithium battery -> inverter 12v -> 120v AC -> devices

Not ideal, not recommended, too messy.

if i remember correctly you can get away with a charge controller, acid batery (is it also called sealed battery idk) and inverter DC to AC, wattmeter and thats about. that guide uses 2x100Wp solar panel so its like 24V+ or something? (lithium battery is expensive as hell)

Edited by Oalei
i forgot some things
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Oalei said:

if i remember correctly you can get away with a charge controller, acid batery (is it also called sealed battery idk) and inverter DC to AC, wattmeter and thats about. that guide uses 2x100Wp solar panel so its like 24V+ or something? (lithium battery is expensive as hell)

Yeah. what i said applied for 6v solar panel scenario.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
3 minutes ago, mariushm said:

Yeah. what i said applied for 6v solar panel scenario.

so if its more than 6V do i need like a charge controller with 40A and circuit breaker for a medium that can take like 50A and also like gauge 4 cables? so lets say i want a 12V solar panel with 150Wp or something is that even makes sense idk

Share on other sites

Here's the basics.

You have Voltage (V) and you have Current (A) ... these two multiplied result in Power ( Watts, W) ...

So V x A = W

Taking that 100w panel I mentioned above, that's a 100w panel with an optimum voltage of 17.9v and 5.72A  ... 17.9v x 5.72A = 102.388 watts.

The maximums (not healthy for the panel) are 21.6v and 6.24A of current.

You need a controller that can handle at least the maximum voltage the panel produces, which is 21.6v, plus some safety margin, so let's say minimum 25v.  However, most controllers can handle higher voltages, which would make it possible to use two such panels wired in series - series means the voltages double but the current remains the same. Parallel means the voltage remains the same but current doubles. This means you don't have to worry that much about this parameter, most controllers even the cheap 20-40\$ have a reasonably high threshold. For example, the one I mentioned in my post is designed to work with up to 100v from the solar panels (so let's say 4 100w panels in series, which would give you 4 x 21.6v = ~86v)

Unless you want to waste power, you also need a controller that's designed to handle the amount of current the panel produces. So if the above panel can output maximum 6.24A of current, you need a controller designed to handle at least this much, otherwise the energy is just wasted - the controller won't be killed by this excess energy, it just won't use it.

So in this case, you could say "I'll go with a 10A controller because 10A is higher than 6.24A so everything will be fine" but you could also think "I'd rather pay 5-10\$ more and buy a 20A controller, just in case I'll find a bigger but cheaper solar panel at some point and I'll have more than 10A of current" ... also often differences between 10A and 20A and 30A should be quite small, so it's worth going for the next step up, as they're likely to heat less, be more reliable etc.

The controller I linked to in my post has "rated charge current" of 20A , that means it can push into the lead acid battery up to 20A of current ... and since the charging voltage is around 13.2v, that means the controller can push into the battery up to around 13.2 x 20A = ~ 250 watts

As for wire gauge ... no, it depends on the distance between the solar panel and the controller and the battery.

You need a wire thick enough to handle the current from the solar panel and the current going to the battery.

Your solar panel's maximum current is 6.2A so you need a wire thick enough to handle that with minimal losses, but there's no rule saying you can't use thicker wire to reduce losses in the cable.

For example, AWG 18 wires (the thickness of regular wires the power supply uses) are rated for 10A of current for short distances, so you could use them... but considering you'll want to have as few losses as possible, you may want to go with AWG16 or AWG14 wires, which are thicker and can handle more current - your solar panel would still give only 6.2A max

If you use more than one 100w panel, that means the controller may be able to push a lot of current into the battery, so between the controller and the battery you'd want slightly thicker wires, capable of handling those 20A (or whatever limit your controller has)

If you look into the manual of that controller I mentioned in the post, look at page 24: https://www.renogy.com/template/files/Manuals/RNG-CTRL-RVR2040_V1.0.pdf

You can see it says that for the 20A model, you can insert wires up to AWG 10, and for the 40A models they have bigger holes, allowing AWG 8 wires to be used.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, mariushm said:

Here's the basics.

You have Voltage (V) and you have Current (A) ... these two multiplied result in Power ( Watts, W) ...

So V x A = W

Taking that 100w panel I mentioned above, that's a 100w panel with an optimum voltage of 17.9v and 5.72A  ... 17.9v x 5.72A = 102.388 watts.

The maximums (not healthy for the panel) are 21.6v and 6.24A of current.

You need a controller that can handle at least the maximum voltage the panel produces, which is 21.6v, plus some safety margin, so let's say minimum 25v.  However, most controllers can handle higher voltages, which would make it possible to use two such panels wired in series - series means the voltages double but the current remains the same. Parallel means the voltage remains the same but current doubles. This means you don't have to worry that much about this parameter, most controllers even the cheap 20-40\$ have a reasonably high threshold. For example, the one I mentioned in my post is designed to work with up to 100v from the solar panels (so let's say 4 100w panels in series, which would give you 4 x 21.6v = ~86v)

Unless you want to waste power, you also need a controller that's designed to handle the amount of current the panel produces. So if the above panel can output maximum 6.24A of current, you need a controller designed to handle at least this much, otherwise the energy is just wasted - the controller won't be killed by this excess energy, it just won't use it.

So in this case, you could say "I'll go with a 10A controller because 10A is higher than 6.24A so everything will be fine" but you could also think "I'd rather pay 5-10\$ more and buy a 20A controller, just in case I'll find a bigger but cheaper solar panel at some point and I'll have more than 10A of current" ... also often differences between 10A and 20A and 30A should be quite small, so it's worth going for the next step up, as they're likely to heat less, be more reliable etc.

The controller I linked to in my post has "rated charge current" of 20A , that means it can push into the lead acid battery up to 20A of current ... and since the charging voltage is around 13.2v, that means the controller can push into the battery up to around 13.2 x 20A = ~ 250 watts

As for wire gauge ... no, it depends on the distance between the solar panel and the controller and the battery.

You need a wire thick enough to handle the current from the solar panel and the current going to the battery.

Your solar panel's maximum current is 6.2A so you need a wire thick enough to handle that with minimal losses, but there's no rule saying you can't use thicker wire to reduce losses in the cable.

For example, AWG 18 wires (the thickness of regular wires the power supply uses) are rated for 10A of current for short distances, so you could use them... but considering you'll want to have as few losses as possible, you may want to go with AWG16 or AWG14 wires, which are thicker and can handle more current - your solar panel would still give only 6.2A max

If you use more than one 100w panel, that means the controller may be able to push a lot of current into the battery, so between the controller and the battery you'd want slightly thicker wires, capable of handling those 20A (or whatever limit your controller has)

If you look into the manual of that controller I mentioned in the post, look at page 24: https://www.renogy.com/template/files/Manuals/RNG-CTRL-RVR2040_V1.0.pdf

You can see it says that for the 20A model, you can insert wires up to AWG 10, and for the 40A models they have bigger holes, allowing AWG 8 wires to be used.

well its very complicated if you do not know any basics at all like me, but its not like i will give up on it. so the controller will convert the Volts and Amps on its own and give just like you say 13.2VX20A? and the more Wp  on the solar panel will get more Volts and Amps  that youre going to convert? i read that there is some recommendation for what types of wire to use on the charge controller. so if i want the most effeciency from my solar panel and stuff i would like to get as short possible from cables to cables with less thicker cables is that correct?

Share on other sites

controller sees how much power comes from the solar panel and knows if the battery needs charging or not

if the battery is not fully charged, the controller converts the energy to the voltage the battery needs and fills the battery. The energy that's not used to charge (battery can only suck so much power, may not always suck in all energy from the panel) may be routed to the output

If there's not enough power from the panels, the controller may take from battery and mix it and send it out.

Here's a picture that shows how things work, more or less... may not be accurate, it's simplified... using numbers from the 100w solar panel above

a controller with more amps means it can take in more energy from solar panels and push more into battery (or into more batteries at the same time - you can connect multiple batteries in series or parallel to get more capacity). If you have a solar panel that produces more amps than the amount the controller can push into the battery it just means that extra power is wasted, if it can't be used by the devices you already have plugged in.

For example, if your solar panel produces 500 watts and the charger has a 10A limit so the battery can only take in 13v x 10A = 130w, that means there's 500w - 130w = 370 watts that are produced by the solar panel and are just wasted, unless some devices in your house use those.  The controller puts those 370w on the output but if all your devices use only 50w, then 250w+ are just lost, because the controller can only push 10A x 13v = 130w into the battery.

Depending on the controller, you could remedy that by installing two batteries in series, which means now the controller sends 10A x 26v = 260w into the batteries, so you don't lose that much power.

Thicker cables means less losses. You want thicker cables but up to a point, after all the cables must be able to go in the connectors. For the product I linked above the thickest you can use is AWG10 for the 20A model and AWG8 for the 40A model.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
15 minutes ago, mariushm said:

controller sees how much power comes from the solar panel and knows if the battery needs charging or not

if the battery is not fully charged, the controller converts the energy to the voltage the battery needs and fills the battery. The energy that's not used to charge (battery can only suck so much power, may not always suck in all energy from the panel) may be routed to the output

If there's not enough power from the panels, the controller may take from battery and mix it and send it out.

Here's a picture that shows how things work, more or less... may not be accurate, it's simplified... using numbers from the 100w solar panel above

a controller with more amps means it can take in more energy from solar panels and push more into battery (or into more batteries at the same time - you can connect multiple batteries in series or parallel to get more capacity). If you have a solar panel that produces more amps than the amount the controller can push into the battery it just means that extra power is wasted, if it can't be used by the devices you already have plugged in.

For example, if your solar panel produces 500 watts and the charger has a 10A limit so the battery can only take in 13v x 10A = 130w, that means there's 500w - 130w = 370 watts that are produced by the solar panel and are just wasted, unless some devices in your house use those.  The controller puts those 370w on the output but if all your devices use only 50w, then 250w+ are just lost, because the controller can only push 10A x 13v = 130w into the battery.

Depending on the controller, you could remedy that by installing two batteries in series, which means now the controller sends 10A x 26v = 260w into the batteries, so you don't lose that much power.

Thicker cables means less losses. You want thicker cables but up to a point, after all the cables must be able to go in the connectors. For the product I linked above the thickest you can use is AWG10 for the 20A model and AWG8 for the 40A model.

so if i have a controller that have less amps than the solar panel gives like you said 500 Watts it will just be a waste but i can parallel those if thats what i want. So if the battery is full and there is still some currents from the controller its just going to be output replacing the batter and if less the other way around? so after the solar panel is the charge controller and the middle 1 is also a controller or a converter again? AARRRGGGHHHH my brain is slowly gaining knowledge. nvm the middle is a converter my bad my bad or what is it AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

i hope there is a UPS for solar panel cause its basiclly all those stuff but more simplified cause it uses sealed battery right? so its DC and the UPS change it to AC is that correct?

Share on other sites

An ups monitors the AC voltage coming in.

If it goes outside some parameters, it disconnects the AC voltage and an inverter inside takes power from battery and produces AC voltage on the outputs.

When AC voltage on the input is back within safe parameters, the ups uses a power supply inside to convert AC to DC and charge battery.

A small exception is Online UPS (always on) which always convert AC to DC voltage and fill battery and then use inverter to convert dc to AC, so at any point the output is always safe, powered from battery .

The cheaper UPSes have a few milliseconds of time between the moment the AC input is disconnected and the input is redirected to battery and the inverter turns on fully and produces AC on the output... but that's ok, generally most devices are or should be designed to function without AC input for at least 1 cycle (for 120v AC countries where mains is 60Hz, that's ~ 16 ms). Most computer power supplies survive for at least 8-10ms without any power, more if you're close to psu's maximum power for example when gaming)

So an UPS is simpler, the controllers for solar power have to work with wider range of input voltage, an UPS knows it's gonna get 110v AC from the mains to charge battery, while the controller may have to deal with 10v...100v DC and the controller also has to be careful not to "suck" too much power

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
5 minutes ago, mariushm said:

An ups monitors the AC voltage coming in.

If it goes outside some parameters, it disc﻿onnects the AC voltage and an inverter inside takes power from battery and produces AC voltage on the outputs.

When AC voltage on the input is back within safe parameters, the ups uses a power supply inside to convert AC to DC and charge battery.

A small exception is Online UPS (always on) which always convert AC to DC voltage and fill battery and then use inverter to convert dc to AC, so at any point the output is always safe, powered from battery .

The cheaper UPSes have a few milliseconds of time between the moment the AC input is disconnected and the input is redirected to battery and the inverter turns on fully and produces AC on the output... but that's ok, generally most devices are or should be designed to function without AC input for at least 1 cycle (for 120v AC countries where mains is 60Hz, that's ~ 16 ms). Most computer power supplies survive for at least 8-10ms without any power, more if you're close to psu's maximum power for example when gaming)

So an UPS is simpler, the controllers for solar power have to work with wider range of input voltage, an UPS knows it's gonna get 110v AC from the mains to charge battery, while the controller may have to deal with 10v...100v DC and the controller also has to be careful not to "suck" too much power

so if a UPS is not a like good enough quality it can blow up your entire house? so online ups is a safer option if youre in a place that have a sudden blackout very so often? how to even connect a ups with cables and stuff i mean there's nothing on the surface. is what i ask before UPS is correct? im confuse with the inverter stuff from the charge controller and battery to a medium that goes to another converter what is the middle?

Share on other sites

No... well, almost always no.

An UPS monitors the AC input ... if the voltage goes outside some values, input is disconnected and inside the UPS the inverter starts which takes power from battery and begins producing AC voltage to the output sockets. It takes a few milliseconds between the disconnect from mains and the moment when the inverter is turned on fully and produces quality AC power on the output sockets.

During this time, the UPS continues to monitor the input voltage and when its back within safe parameters for a preset minimum of time (for example let's say at least 10 seconds), the UPS reverses the process: it disconnects the inverter and connects the output sockets to the AC input and after, the inverter inside is turned off to save power and reduce heat inside, and the circuit that charges the internal battery is turned on to refill the battery.

So it's safe... but in some rare cases, it's possible that something you have connected to the UPS doesn't have enough energy in its power supply to stay on for that very brief period where the UPS disconnects the AC input and turns on the internal inverter, those few milliseconds.

Always ON upses avoid this by not having any interruption, as the AC is never connected to the output - the inverter is always on and always taking power from battery and placing it on output sockets, and the battery is always being charged - there's no pause and switch over, but the battery is more abused this way, so batteries have to be changed more often compared to other UPS designs.

An UPS is safe most of the time but there are some situations where even an UPS can't keep you safe, like for example let's say a lightning strike sends 30000 volts into the AC socket where you UPS is. Even though the UPS may have components designed to break like fuses and protect, sometimes this amount of high voltage can simply jump from component to component on the circuit board and reach the output sockets.

The controller's job is to monitor panel , fill battery and send a stabilized voltage on the output terminal... the voltage used to charge the battery or the battery voltage, so around 12-13v ... that's all it does. From there, it's up to you what you do with those 12-13v.

You can connect an inverter there which produces 120v AC from that 12v and from there, you can do whatever, it's basically a 120v socket. You could even plug a regular UPS there.

However, the controller MUST have a battery connected to it all the time, in fact the manual even tells you that battery MUST be connected BEFORE you connect the solar panel to the controller.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
3 minutes ago, mariushm said:

No... well, almost always no.

An UPS monitors the AC input ... if the voltage goes outside some values, input is disconnected and inside the UPS the inverter﻿ starts which takes power from battery and begins producing AC voltage to the output sockets. It takes a few milliseconds between the disconnect from mains and the moment when the inverter is turned on fully and produces quality AC power on the output sockets.

During this time, the UPS continues to monitor the input voltage and when its back within safe parameters for a preset minimum of time (for example let's say at least 10 seconds), the UPS reverses the process: it disconnects the inverter and connects the output sockets to the AC input and after, the inverter inside is turned off to save power and reduce heat inside, and the circuit that charges the internal battery is turned on to refill the battery.

So it's safe... but in some rare cases, it's possible that something you have connected to the UPS doesn't have enough energy in its power supply to stay on for that very brief period where the UPS disconnects the AC input and turns on the internal inverter, those few milliseconds.

Always ON upses avoid this by not having any interruption, as the AC is never connected to the output - the inverter is always on and always taking power from battery and placing it on output sockets, and the battery is always being charged - there's no pause and switch over, but the battery is more abused this way, so batteries have to be changed more often compared to other UPS designs.

An UPS is safe most of the time but there are some situations where even an UPS can't keep you safe, like for example let's say a lightning strike sends 30000 volts into the AC socket where you UPS is. Even though the UPS may have components designed to break like fuses and protect, sometimes this amount of high voltage can simply jump from component to component on the circuit board and reach the output sockets.

The controller's job is to monitor panel , fill battery and send a stabilized voltage on the output terminal... the voltage used to charge the battery or the battery voltage, so around 12-13v ... that's all it does. From there, it's up to you what you do with those 12-13v.

You can connect an inverter there which produces 120v AC from that 12v and from there, you can do whatever, it's basically a 120v socket. You could even plug a regular UPS there.

However, the controller MUST have a battery connected to it all the time, in fact the manual even tells you that battery MUST be connected BEFORE you connect the solar panel to the controller.

why is it that if its a UPS i understand it better than using charge controller and stuff.

so i still have a battery connected to a solar panel and the battery also connecting to the UPS and the UPS using the battery as a medium charge the UPS battery and uses the inverter also?????!!!!!!!

is there also like the ups can take from the house and battery also? so it manage the electicity for a certain area if the eletricity from the house is disconnected it will uses the solar panel or battery to the ups before using the UPS first?

Share on other sites

There are more advanced controllers which have inverter built in. See for example Tesla Power wall - that's a controller with inverter built in and with lithium batteries inside instead of lead acid batteries.

Not sure why is it that hard to understand.  UPS job is to PROTECT devices connected to it from variations in the AC power you receive from your electricity company. In order to perform this job, the UPS uses a battery to store energy for those moments where the energy from the input AC socket is not reliable enough, and your devices must be disconnected from the electricity coming from the electricity company.

The controller's job is different: it's to take wide range of input voltage from ONE solar or MULTIPLE solar panels and convert that into a voltage and make it available to you*.

As an added bonus, the battery is added to it in order to store the energy produced by the solar panels which isn't directly consumed by the devices you connect to the controller's output.

If you connect an inverter to the controller, to convert that 11..13v (if you use a single 12v battery) to 120v AC you will always have AC voltage, just like you would have with an UPS.

However, you don't have those protections against fluctuations on the AC input that an UPS has , because there's no such thing with a controller... as long as the battery or the solar panel give power, the inverter will output clean 120v AC or 230v AC or whatever AC voltage you wish.

There may be "smarter" controllers which also have AC input to provide extra power on the output if the solar panel and the internal battery are not enough, do your own research for that..

* For example, you could have 4 of those 100w solar panels wired in series, and you can have one 24v battery or two 12v batteries wired in series - so you have ~ 80v from the solar panels which gets converted to around 26v by the controller and pumped into battery or batteries and then you have that voltage on the output, so you can use a 24v to 120v AC inverter to have AC voltage.  Controller has flexibility, while UPS only protects your devices by using energy from battery to power them if the input AC is too bad to be used.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
3 minutes ago, mariushm said:

There are more advanced controllers which have inverter built in. See for example Tesla Power wall - that's a controller with inverter built in and with lithium batteries inside instead of lead acid batteries.

N﻿ot sure why is it that hard to understand.  UPS job is to PROTECT devices connected to it from variations in the AC power you receive from your electricity company. In order to perform this job, the UPS uses a battery to store energy for those moments where the energy from the input AC socket is not reliable enough, and your devices must be disconnected from the electricity coming from the electricity company.

The controller's job is different: it's to take wide range of input voltage from ONE solar or MULTIPLE solar panels and convert that into a voltage and make it available to you*.

As an added bonus, the battery is added to it in order to store the energy produced by the solar panels which isn't directly consumed by the devices you connect to the controller's output.

If you connect an inverter to the controller, to convert that 11..13v (if you use a single 12v battery) to 120v AC you will always have AC voltage, just like you would have with an UPS.

However, you don't have those protections against fluctuations on the AC input that an UPS has , because there's no such thing with a controller... as long as the battery or the solar panel give power, the inverter will output clean 120v AC or 230v AC or whatever AC voltage you wish.

There may be "smarter" controllers which also have AC input to provide extra power on the output if the solar panel and the internal battery are not enough, do your own research for that..

* For example, you could have 4 of those 100w solar panels wired in series, and you can have one 24v battery or two 12v batteries wired in series - so you have ~ 80v from the solar panels which gets converted to around 26v by the controller and pumped into battery or batteries and then you have that voltage on the output, so you can use a 24v to 120v AC inverter to have AC voltage.  Controller has flexibility, while UPS only protects your devices by using energy from battery to power them if the input AC is too bad to be used.

i dont mean a inverter like a device i meant the UPS acts like and inverter if the battery inside the UPS is full like you said on the battery and middle thing to a converter making it go around the world and just using it for output.

what i ask is if the electricity from the house is disconnected and which one will it uses first the battery from the solar panel or just the UPS battery than the battery from the solar panel

i think this is why i need to learn english more and be fluent at it, im still not very good acceptable at the very least

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
3 hours ago, mariushm said:

There are more advanced controllers which have inverter built in. See for example Tesla Power wall - that's a controller with inverter built in and with lithium batteries inside instead of lead acid batteries.

Not sure why is it that hard to understand.  UPS job is to PROTECT devices connected to it from variations in the AC power you receive from your electricity company. In order to perform this job, the UPS uses a battery to store energy for those moments where the energy from the input AC socket is not reliable enough, and your devices must be disconnected from the electricity coming from the electricity company.

The controller's job is different: it's to take wide range of input voltage from ONE solar or MULTIPLE solar panels and convert that into a voltage and make it available to you*.

As an added bonus, the battery is added to it in order to store the energy produced by the solar panels which isn't directly consumed by the devices you connect to the controller's output.

If you connect an inverter to the controller, to convert that 11..13v (if you use a single 12v battery) to 120v AC you will always have AC voltage, just like you would have with an UPS.

However, you don't have those protections against fluctuations on the AC input that an UPS has , because there's no such thing with a controller... as long as the battery or the solar panel give power, the inverter will output clean 120v AC or 230v AC or whatever AC voltage you wish.

There may be "smarter" controllers which also have AC input to provide extra power on the output if the solar panel and the internal battery are not enough, do your own research for that..

* For example, you could have 4 of those 100w solar panels wired in series, and you can have one 24v battery or two 12v batteries wired in series - so you have ~ 80v from the solar panels which gets converted to around 26v by the controller and pumped into battery or batteries and then you have that voltage on the output, so you can use a 24v to 120v AC inverter to have AC voltage.  Controller has flexibility, while UPS only protects your devices by using energy from battery to power them if the input AC is too bad to be used.

The ups hybrid option is just too expensive so I will not do that. I did some research and from what I gained that's lead acid battery only have 50% effecieny so I if I get a 2200W it will only be converted into 1100W. And straight into a 2200W inverter and you can go either 12V or 24V depending on which one you need? And to count how long it will charge is using watt hours so it's very straight if it's 2200W it will takes 2200kWH which mean it will take 1 hour to be full is it even right?

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

Wait it's wrong it's supposed to be 2,2kwh

Share on other sites

Not sure what you mean about 50% efficiency...

A battery is a battery... it stores energy.  A lithium battery stores energy just like a lead acid battery or a NiMH battery.

Yes, UPSes have a VA rating, for example 2200VA ... and yes, depending on what you plug in it, a 2200VA USP would be able to continuously power devices that consume up to around 1100w of power - but that's not a consequence of UPS having lead acid battery, it's related to how AC voltage works.

An UPS with lithium battery would have the same way of specifying things.

How much times it takes to charge battery depends on the capacity of the battery.

You can have cheaper batteries, like the kind in regular UPS devices, or you can have monster batteries.

The cheapest UPSes typically have 7Ah or 10ish Ah batteries... but you can have up to 88Ah batteries.

Here's a 33Ah battery : https://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/panasonic-bsg/LC-R1233P/P259-ND/65097

Datasheet says (go to page 9 for the linked model) : https://na.industrial.panasonic.com/sites/default/pidsa/files/lcseries_datasheets_merged.pdf

So you can see the battery is rated for 33 Ah capacity, but the actual capacity will vary depending on how much energy you shove in it - if you go slow over longer period of time, the battery will hold more charge. If you rush, it will hold less. So it says there:

* charge at 1.65A (so around 25w), it would take around 20 hours to fully charge the battery to 33Ah capacity

* charge at double that, around 50w and you charge it in 10 hours and still get almost all capacity

If you have a 100w solar panel, which let's say would produce between 40w and 80w throughout the day, this battery may be fully charged by the end of the day, if you're not using any power with your devices.

Same page has discharge graphs :

What does this tell you ... look at the red line, because the battery temperature will be 25c or higher.

So if something takes 2A of current from the battery (which will have at the beginning around 12.6-13v and go down to 10.8v towards the end) the battery can provide this energy for up to 15 hours.

So let's say you have an inverter connected to the battery, and let's say you plug your laptop in the inverter and the laptop consumes around 25 watts on average, and you also have a router which consumes around 5w on average and maybe something else that consumes around 5 watts, so overall let's say 35 watts, then the inverter would take around 40 watts from the battery, due to its internal inefficiency.

When the battery is fresh and fully charged, its voltage will be around 12.6v, so 40 watts / 12.6v is 3.17 A

When the battery will be discharged a bit and the voltage goes down to around 11.5v, the current is still 40w / 11.5v =  3.47A

When almost fully discharged at 10.8v, the current will be 40w / 10.8v = 3.7A

So the current would be around the 3.3A value, which means you can follow the yellow curve on the second picture... which tells you that the battery would be able to keep your inverter powered and able to produce 40w of AC power to devices for up to around 8-9 hours.... AGAIN, this is provided the solar panel doesn't produce any power and the battery is not being charged at the same time.

The first picture confirms the calculations ... look at the red line, and between the 3A and 4A steps on the x axis, and you can see at the top that the datasheet estimates between 7 and 10 hours.

If you have something connected to the inverter which uses more power, like around 80w, then your battery will be able to provide those 80w continuously for around 3.5-4h. You'd look at the 6.6A black curve.

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP
4 hours ago, mariushm said:

Not sure what you mean about 50% efficiency...

A battery is a battery... it stores energy.  A lithium battery stores energy just like a lead acid battery or a NiMH battery.

Yes, UPSes have a VA rating, for example 2200VA ... and yes, depending on what you plug in it, a 2200VA USP would be able to continuously power devices that consume up to around 1100w of power - but that's not a consequence of UPS having lead acid battery, it's related to how AC voltage works.

An UPS with lithium battery would have the same way of specifying things.

How much times it takes to charge battery depends on the capacity of the battery.

You can have cheaper batteries, like the kind in regular UPS devices, or you can have monster batteries.

The cheapest UPSes typically have 7Ah or 10ish Ah batteries... but you can have up to 88Ah batteries.

Here's a 33Ah battery : https://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/panasonic-bsg/LC-R1233P/P259-ND/65097

Datasheet says (go to page 9 for the linked model) : https://na.industrial.panasonic.com/sites/default/pidsa/files/lcseries_datasheets_merged.pdf

So you can see the battery is rated for 33 Ah capacity, but the actual capacity will vary depending on how much energy you shove in it - if you go slow over longer period of time, the battery will hold more charge. If you rush, it will hold less. So it says there:

* charge at 1.65A (so around 25w), it would take around 20 hours to fully charge the battery to 33Ah capacity

* charge at double that, around 50w and you charge it in 10 hours and still get almost all capacity

If you have a 100w solar panel, which let's say would produce between 40w and 80w throughout the day, this battery may be fully charged by the end of the day, if you're not using any power with your devices.

Same page has discharge graphs :

What does this tell you ... look at the red line, because the battery temperature will be 25c or higher.

So if something takes 2A of current from the battery (which will have at the beginning around 12.6-13v and go down to 10.8v towards the end) the battery can provide this energy for up to 15 hours.

So let's say you have an inverter connected to the battery, and let's say you plug your laptop in the inverter and the laptop consumes around 25 watts on average, and you also have a router which consumes around 5w on average and maybe something else that consumes around 5 watts, so overall let's say 35 watts, then the inverter would take around 40 watts from the battery, due to its internal inefficiency.

When the battery is fresh and fully charged, its voltage will be around 12.6v, so 40 watts / 12.6v is 3.17 A

When the battery will be discharged a bit and the voltage goes down to around 11.5v, the current is still 40w / 11.5v =  3.47A

When almost fully discharged at 10.8v, the current will be 40w / 10.8v = 3.7A

So the current would be around the 3.3A value, which means you can follow the yellow curve on the second picture... which tells you that the battery would be able to keep your inverter powered and able to produce 40w of AC power to devices for up to around 8-9 hours.... AGAIN, this is provided the solar panel doesn't produce any power and the battery is not being charged at the same time.

The first picture confirms the calculations ... look at the red line, and between the 3A and 4A steps on the x axis, and you can see at the top that the datasheet estimates between 7 and 10 hours.

If you have something connected to the inverter which uses more power, like around 80w, then your battery will be able to provide those 80w continuously for around 3.5-4h. You'd look at the 6.6A black curve.

if you want the lead acid battery to live longer you will only use 50% of it. i just see something simpler if your panel produces 100W at its peak the most reallistic way to make is make it 70% so you got 70W and say i want a 1000W and divided it, it will take around 14.28 hours to make it full. i forgot how to count if theres a constant 100W to use for a device. i mostly dont understand the graphs but the more i read the more i understand or misunderstand tbh.so if i want power something that have the power around 40W for 24 hours i need a battery that have around 1000W battery? and if a battery is full the voltage will go down from around 12.6V and lower, but you still need that 40W so the lower the Volts is the more the Amps is. is that how arithmetics works? is it like if i have a 100W panel it produces 70W average and i take 40W from the panel to the device that needs power and the rest is going to the battery?

Share on other sites
Posted · Original PosterOP

IDK if you're like face palming like hell or what, everything I write before this is basically what you write on from the first 1 till the newest 1, kinda if I'm not wrong here