I have figured my daily usage at between 200 and 300 watts. i have 2 spots for solar panels measuring 23" by 48". I'm looking to put as much as i can fit in the spots. any recommendations? I have a single 225 ah 8d battery. also am in process of building a 225 watt wind genny to augment as needed.
First off, you need to get your units straight. A watt is a unit of power, or energy per unit time. If you average 200 watts for 24 hours, that would be 400 amp-hours (@12V), which seems incredibly high for an I24.
Now, if you really mean that you average 200/24 watts, or 8.3 watts, that would be about 0.7 amps (or about 16.8 amp-hours); a much more reasonable figure for your boat, and also in line with the previous answer. Let's round that up to 20 amp-hours, and then double it to take cloudy days and such into account. Now, you need about 40 amp-hours of charging capacity to keep you even. A solar panel only charges at its rated capacity right in the middle of the day, so on average you get about 4 hours of the rated capacity per day. That means you need a panel (or set of panels) with an output of about 10 amps (or slightly less, since you charge at high than 12 volts). Put it all together, and you need about 100 to 120 watts of solar panel. For modern solar panels you get about 150 - 160 watts per square meter, so (using the most conservative numbers) you need about 0.8 square meters of panel. One 23"x48" panel would be pretty close to that. I would split the area (for a bit of redundancy) in two and get two 2' by 2' panels.
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