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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 11-12-2008
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solar panels

im looking to have a 48v battery bank for an electric propultion system, besides having a generator for charging i want solar panels also. can solar panels be wired in series to multiply there voltage?
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im looking to have a 48v battery bank for an electric propultion system, besides having a generator for charging i want solar panels also. can solar panels be wired in series to multiply there voltage?
Well, yes, but that is not how you do it. You buy a charge controller and set the voltage output that you want.

On the Outback, 48V is an option.
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sound pretty simple, will one panel still make 48v or would you need more?
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One panel will generally be 16-18 Volts... but the charge controller will step the amperage down and voltage up... To get any kind of real usable output for a 48 VDC panel, you'd probably need at least four 130 Watt panels at a bare minimum.
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sound pretty simple, will one panel still make 48v or would you need more?
My opinion on the matter for electric propulsion is that in order for it to be effective you will need a very large array. Even then, it will only be a small supplement to your generator.

- CD
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i know the solar wont provide much charging power, it will be like a trickle charger to keep the bank toped off. i could fit 4 decent size panels on my hard top when its built, so this sounds doable, thanks for the replies!
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i know the solar wont provide much charging power, it will be like a trickle charger to keep the bank toped off. i could fit 4 decent size panels on my hard top when its built, so this sounds doable, thanks for the replies!
I currently have 4-Kyocera 130's wired in series to an Outback MX60. I get, on average, about 205-210 ah/day in N Texas. Some days it is more, some less. I would estimate it would be more in many latitudes, less in others.

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Old 11-13-2008
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For trickle charging and topping up lets say you want a 5amp possible charge current at 48 volts this is about 250 watts total of panels. 2.5 amps would be 125watts of panels. What size will your battery bank be in amphours at 48volts? Note a 100amphour 12V battery gives you 25amphrs at 48vlts. That is the place to start.
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favorite solar panel recommendations

I have 2 solar panels for a trickle charge but will be adding more instruments and now need to increase the size of my array. Can anyone make some brand recommendations based on personal experience?

Thanks
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Kyocera and Siemens are pretty good brands. I've used both, but neither in a marine situation...
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