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Old 01-13-2016, 08:40 AM   #31
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I've learned a lot from this thread. Thanks to all of you who've posted!
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:41 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by jaycojls View Post
Ignorance here so...
Why does this matter? Aren't we just wanting to put Amps back into the battery? If the Amps don't change, only wattage, what are we PWM users loosing?
Thanks in advance,
Jeremy
Jeremy,
There is nothing wrong with PWM controllers... I was just clarifying what the differences are between the two technologies.

The main intent in forums is to answer other members questions. Because one type of technology outperforms another does not mean that it should not be purchased, or over looked, but if a member may be looking for utilizing his purchases to their fullest potential (serious dry-camping...) they should be made aware of the differences. Yes, you can add more panels to make up for the differences between the 2 technologies, and down the road (no pun intended) you can always switch to an MPPT if you are out of space.

I just look at the question and share information that I have. It is still up to the individual member to decide which one meets their personal needs.
I hope we may have answered the questions raised in this thread. If not, let the members know so that they can be addressed. Like I said there is nothing wrong with PWM controllers, they fill their nitch perfectly, as do MPPT controllers.

I just wanted to make individuals aware of the differences and the effect they have on performance..

Don
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:06 AM   #33
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Well said! X2

Some other areas on the web PWM vs MPPT borders on religon, to the point I was reluctant to post here. No flames! Great!
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:30 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Mustang65 View Post
Jeremy,
There is nothing wrong with PWM controllers... I was just clarifying what the differences are between the two technologies.

The main intent in forums is to answer other members questions. Because one type of technology outperforms another does not mean that it should not be purchased, or over looked, but if a member may be looking for utilizing his purchases to their fullest potential (serious dry-camping...) they should be made aware of the differences. Yes, you can add more panels to make up for the differences between the 2 technologies, and down the road (no pun intended) you can always switch to an MPPT if you are out of space.

I just look at the question and share information that I have. It is still up to the individual member to decide which one meets their personal needs.
I hope we may have answered the questions raised in this thread. If not, let the members know so that they can be addressed. Like I said there is nothing wrong with PWM controllers, they fill their nitch perfectly, as do MPPT controllers.

I just wanted to make individuals aware of the differences and the effect they have on performance..

Don
Actually, I was wondering if my assumption, hence the ignorance part, was correct?
So with the PWM controller I am still getting the same amps just loosing watts in the controller, correct?
With an MPPT controller, it can convert any voltage above the charging voltage to amps, correct?
Sorry for the confusion, and was really wondering if loosing that wattage really mattered if we were still getting max stated amps from the panel. So does it matter? I'm assuming not, and is that wattage that is lost how the MPPT controller creates it's additional amps? Just trying to learn... 😊
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:49 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by jaycojls View Post
Actually, I was wondering if my assumption, hence the ignorance part, was correct?
So with the PWM controller I am still getting the same amps just loosing watts in the controller, correct?
With an MPPT controller, it can convert any voltage above the charging voltage to amps, correct?
Sorry for the confusion, and was really wondering if loosing that wattage really mattered if we were still getting max stated amps from the panel. So does it matter? I'm assuming not, and is that wattage that is lost how the MPPT controller creates it's additional amps? Just trying to learn... ��
The confusion you are having is that you are assuming that amps do not change with an MPPT controller. In fact, amps do change. You can think of an MPPT controller as a "matching" device. It allows the panel to operate at its ideal voltage and then converts that to a voltage that is appropriate for the battery. When it makes this conversion more current (amps) are available for charging the battery. The concept is somewhat like a stepdown transformer used in AC power.
Assuming V = Voltage and I = Amps.
The equation for an MPPT controller is: Vpanel / Vbattery * Ipanel
So if you have a 24V panel with a max current of 10A.
24V / 12V * 10A = 20A delivered to battery.
With a PWM controller the output is simply Ipanel or 10A in this case.
Of course this is an over-simplified example, but you get the idea.


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Old 01-13-2016, 11:22 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by jaycojls View Post
Sorry for the confusion, and was really wondering if loosing that wattage really mattered if we were still getting max stated amps from the panel. So does it matter? 😊
The best way to answer this is by my asking if the PWM system meets the needs of the system owner? If it does then it really does not matter. If it does not meet the needs, then they would have to decide which way they wanted to proceed.

Don
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Old 01-13-2016, 11:31 AM   #37
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DanNJanice, Don thank you kindly.
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Old 01-13-2016, 11:58 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaycojls View Post
Actually, I was wondering if my assumption, hence the ignorance part, was correct?
So with the PWM controller I am still getting the same amps just loosing watts in the controller, correct?
With an MPPT controller, it can convert any voltage above the charging voltage to amps, correct?
Sorry for the confusion, and was really wondering if loosing that wattage really mattered if we were still getting max stated amps from the panel. So does it matter? I'm assuming not, and is that wattage that is lost how the MPPT controller creates it's additional amps? Just trying to learn... 😊
I'm learning this stuff as i go, too. But i think there's more to it than saying that we're trying to put amps in to the battery. We're trying to put electrons into the battery. And the way we measure that is a certain number of amps at a given voltage.... A * V = watts.

For example... putting 5A into a 12V battery is less power than putting 5A into a 48V battery. The amps alone aren't the full story. Both are 5A but since the voltages are different, the amount of power is very different.
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Old 01-14-2016, 02:31 PM   #39
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The other advantage is performance in low light conditions. Because PWM uses lower voltage panels, higher solar flux rates are needed to bring the panel voltage above battery voltage so charging can begin. Because MPPT can accept much higher input voltages, you can take advantage of higher voltage panels. Example, half output on a 18 volt panel = 9V, no charging, half output on a 36 volt panel = 18V, battery charges.

My personal experience using a 24 volt (36V open circuit) panel show that the system starts charging as soon as it gets light out, even before sunrise, and even on cloudy days still charges at a reduced rate.
This brings up another one: Shade

Is there any difference between shade in a panel from a vent cover, antenna, etc. and shade from being parked near or under trees, or shade from clouds?
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Old 01-18-2016, 08:56 AM   #40
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A perfect example of this was last Friday, Jan 15. I had to go out to the trailer/ job site, weather was light snow, about 2" covering the panel, overcast skies. Panel voltage 26.3V, battery 13.4V, charging .63 amps. As I said in a previous post, I'm at 53 degrees latitude, so our solar flux levels are very low at this time of year. Not enough power to use the trailer at this time of year, but more than ample to maintain battery condition without having to disconnect fuses or disconnecting the batteries.
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