Topics

Solar and shade

Joerg Esdorn
 

I’m thinking about where to add more solar to my boat and the wheel house of the A55 is an obvious place.  Problem is that the space is often shaded by the boom, particularly at anchor.  Would it help to use two panels - one on starboard and one on port - with separate controllers?  

Joerg Esdorn 
A55 Kincsem
Currently in Cascais 

Paul Brown
 

Hi Joerg,

I have two large panels over the dingy davits and fixed to the Simpson Davis and are wired in parallel which works if one panel is shaded... I’m working with a stainless steel designer to manufacture a platform that will house 4 large panels providing max power 1320w/24v which realistically should produce around Max 32A continuous under normal operating solar conditions e.g. full direct sun and raise the panels to around mizzen  boom height to reduce shading issues and allow ample head room when disembarking via the passerella 

Also mounting all 4 panels above the davits allow simple wiring through the davits and the lazarette and simple to wire 2x2 in parallel to reduce assist the shading effects

I hope to a achieve an aesthetic structure and stable for high winds with the Simpson Davits not being over loaded while gaining more rigidity into the Davit structure, I saw similar structures recently on many catamarans at the Cannes boat show

I considered mounting the two additional panels above the wheel house but I figure so many issues with shading and increased wiring and additional holes, also it may restrict the use of the sliding roof

If there is a more practical and better way to gain this level of generation and maximise its production with reduced shading effect by positioning then any assistant or comments would be greatly appreciated 

Kind regards Paul - Fortuna II 55/17






On 28 Sep 2019, at 8:41 am, Joerg Esdorn via Groups.Io <jhe1313@...> wrote:

I’m thinking about where to add more solar to my boat and the wheel house of the A55 is an obvious place.  Problem is that the space is often shaded by the boom, particularly at anchor.  Would it help to use two panels - one on starboard and one on port - with separate controllers?  

Joerg Esdorn 
A55 Kincsem
Currently in Cascais 

Scott SV Tengah
 

I have an A54, but I installed three 320W LG Neon2 panels in parallel on an arch that while it can probably stand on its own, is also attached to the top of the Simpson Davits. I called Simpson and they stated that they can't openly recommend doing what I did because it might deform the tubing on the Davits, making sliding in and out difficult, but off the record it'd probably be OK.

I would not suggest putting the weight of all the panels on the davits alone without additional connections to the stern.

If you'd like, I can take some photos of my setup. It's held in 70 knot winds, so the strength seems sufficient.

Separate controllers would help reduce the effects of shading, for sure. We just went parallel instead. FYI I went for the Victron 150v/35amp model because the literature suggested that the MPPT is good for 1000w systems and mine is rated for 960w. I can attest that my LG panels have hit the 35amp limit on sunny days, so if I'd do it again, I'd upsize the MPPT.

--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

Paul Brown
 

Hi Scott,

thank you for the information, it would be great assistance if you could send some photos, I like your idea of combining the arch with the davits, it would maintain the SWL of the davit system I expect well.

I’m intending to run a set of wires for each panel from the panels to the controller in the event that perhaps  individual controllers are the answer down the track. I know a catamaran owner that has I think around ten panels and each has its own controller, he said this system works great reducing the shading effect.

Thank you again for your assistance.

Kind regards, Paul Fortuna II 55/17

On 28 Sep 2019, at 19:02, Scott SV Tengah <Scott.nguyen@...> wrote:

I have an A54, but I installed three 320W LG Neon2 panels in parallel on an arch that while it can probably stand on its own, is also attached to the top of the Simpson Davits. I called Simpson and they stated that they can't openly recommend doing what I did because it might deform the tubing on the Davits, making sliding in and out difficult, but off the record it'd probably be OK.

I would not suggest putting the weight of all the panels on the davits alone without additional connections to the stern.

If you'd like, I can take some photos of my setup. It's held in 70 knot winds, so the strength seems sufficient.

Separate controllers would help reduce the effects of shading, for sure. We just went parallel instead. FYI I went for the Victron 150v/35amp model because the literature suggested that the MPPT is good for 1000w systems and mine is rated for 960w. I can attest that my LG panels have hit the 35amp limit on sunny days, so if I'd do it again, I'd upsize the MPPT.

--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

SY STELLA
 

Paul, 
i mounted three panels on Stella using a SS structure integrated to the Davits.  Very happy with the low visual impact and functionality.
The panels also make a great drone landing pad!
Pic attached.

Scott SV Tengah
 

Dean - Great idea with using it as a drone landing pad!

Paul - my arch is not low visual impact, but I am pretty confident it can handle anything we throw at it. See attached - please ignore the clothes lines / mess. :) I paid around 2000euros in Spain for it. 

With my controller near the battery compartment, I ran a pair of 13mm2 wires from the arch to the MPPT. Not sure if there's enough space for 3 pairs. But your solution with the 3 controllers is the. best with respect to minimizing the impact of shading on power production. Also the most expensive!


--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

Scott SV Tengah
 

Another photo. Note the vertical near the stern light. Initially the boatyard continued the diagonal near the upper right of the photo all the way to the stern. As should be obvious, that interferes with lifting a dinghy tight against the davits.

"It's fine having the dinghy at 45 degrees, people do it all the time!", they said.

I kicked and screamed until they changed it.
--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

Paul Brown
 

Thank you for the image, I like the simplistic lines and would expect it to be adequate given the strength through the davits 

A drone landing pad is very handy too

Thanks Paul 


On 29 Sep 2019, at 12:50 am, Scott SV Tengah <Scott.nguyen@...> wrote:

Another photo. Note the vertical near the stern light. Initially the boatyard continued the diagonal near the upper right of the photo all the way to the stern. As should be obvious, that interferes with lifting a dinghy tight against the davits.

"It's fine having the dinghy at 45 degrees, people do it all the time!", they said.

I kicked and screamed until they changed it.
--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

Paul Brown
 

Thanks Scott for both images, it looked good and strong for sure and a reasonable price 

Kind Regards Paul 


On 29 Sep 2019, at 12:50 am, Scott SV Tengah <Scott.nguyen@...> wrote:

Another photo. Note the vertical near the stern light. Initially the boatyard continued the diagonal near the upper right of the photo all the way to the stern. As should be obvious, that interferes with lifting a dinghy tight against the davits.

"It's fine having the dinghy at 45 degrees, people do it all the time!", they said.

I kicked and screamed until they changed it.
--
Scott 
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
http://www.svtengah.com

Joerg Esdorn
 

Thanks guys.  I may upgrade the stern panels as well but I am concerned about windage, waves and esthetics.   So for me, I will never have enough solar to run the entire boat at anchor.  At sea, I have hydro which covers a lot.  

Joerg Esdorn
A55 Kincsem 

Paul Brown
 

This is my solar panels at present, 2x Panasonic 330w/24v delivers around max 16A (achieving around 120-150ah per day average) and very secure with no issues for wind or waves and looks low key, it’s the width and length of the davits, I hope helps Joerg:
image3.jpeg
image2.jpeg
image1.jpeg


On 29 Sep 2019, at 3:29 pm, Joerg Esdorn via Groups.Io <jhe1313@...> wrote:

Thanks guys.  I may upgrade the stern panels as well but I am concerned about windage, waves and esthetics.   So for me, I will never have enough solar to run the entire boat at anchor.  At sea, I have hydro which covers a lot.  

Joerg Esdorn
A55 Kincsem 

Joerg Esdorn
 

very helpful, yes, thanks much Paul.  I have 400W in the same space - that's an easy upgrade.  I figure I can install at least 500W on the wheel house.  Space available over the fixed portion up to the opening hatches is about 1300 long x2100 wide - so could have 2 panels with separate regulator - one port, one starboard.  I have to find panels that are 1300 long and about 1000 wide.  Remember that my main sheet isn't an issue because it ends on the mizzen mast, not the wheel house.  But A55 No. 3 with your mainsheet setup has one panel and the owner is very happy with it.  See pic.

Cheers Joerg

Joerg Esdorn
A55 Kincsem    

Paul Brown
 

Thanks for the image and thought Joerg 

I think the only productive way over the wheel house is again as you’re plan, 1 panel on either side of the boom with separate controllers or both panels wired in parallel is optimum. 1 panel covering that area would not be very productive as it would be shaded most of the time, even the shading from stay wires will greatly reduce production of that and any other panel connected in series. The most productive position is aft over the dingy davits and if possible above the height of the mizzen boom, I expect this is why there are so many solar arches added to the aft these days...

Kind regards Paul 


On 29 Sep 2019, at 9:02 pm, Joerg Esdorn via Groups.Io <jhe1313@...> wrote:

very helpful, yes, thanks much Paul.  I have 400W in the same space - that's an easy upgrade.  I figure I can install at least 500W on the wheel house.  Space available over the fixed portion up to the opening hatches is about 1300 long x2100 wide - so could have 2 panels with separate regulator - one port, one starboard.  I have to find panels that are 1300 long and about 1000 wide.  Remember that my main sheet isn't an issue because it ends on the mizzen mast, not the wheel house.  But A55 No. 3 with your mainsheet setup has one panel and the owner is very happy with it.  See pic.

Cheers Joerg

Joerg Esdorn
A55 Kincsem    <Ozouri solar.jpg>

Kelly Ran
 

Hi Joerg,

We installed 500W worth of panels on our bimini - 5 x 100W. We did not have the budget (or eye) for a solar arch.
I designed the system such that each panel has its own charge controller. When not sailing, we bring the boom to one side, so only one panel (out of five) is shaded at any given time.
In the Caribbean, we got 80+ Ah each day (@ 24V), which covered most *but not all* of our energy needs.
In peak summer in Boston, we can stay on the hook indefinitely (many sunlight hours and less refrigeration power needed).

kelly + ryan
SM233 Iteration
Boston

On Sun, Sep 29, 2019 at 4:52 PM Paul Brown <feeder.brown@...> wrote:
Thanks for the image and thought Joerg 

I think the only productive way over the wheel house is again as you’re plan, 1 panel on either side of the boom with separate controllers or both panels wired in parallel is optimum. 1 panel covering that area would not be very productive as it would be shaded most of the time, even the shading from stay wires will greatly reduce production of that and any other panel connected in series. The most productive position is aft over the dingy davits and if possible above the height of the mizzen boom, I expect this is why there are so many solar arches added to the aft these days...

Kind regards Paul 


On 29 Sep 2019, at 9:02 pm, Joerg Esdorn via Groups.Io <jhe1313@...> wrote:

very helpful, yes, thanks much Paul.  I have 400W in the same space - that's an easy upgrade.  I figure I can install at least 500W on the wheel house.  Space available over the fixed portion up to the opening hatches is about 1300 long x2100 wide - so could have 2 panels with separate regulator - one port, one starboard.  I have to find panels that are 1300 long and about 1000 wide.  Remember that my main sheet isn't an issue because it ends on the mizzen mast, not the wheel house.  But A55 No. 3 with your mainsheet setup has one panel and the owner is very happy with it.  See pic.

Cheers Joerg

Joerg Esdorn
A55 Kincsem    <Ozouri solar.jpg>

Joerg Esdorn
 

Thanks very much for every one’s thoughts!   Joerg Esorn