Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
Sorry if this has been covered, I have 40 of these panels ,and read on the CS site these were on grid only, I bought 40 Enphase 215 with them but I am trying to build a battery power ?backup for fun using 3-4 panels,1 2000 watt xantrex prosine, a mppt 80 amp controller (for expansion),and 600-800 AH 6 or 12v batteries to run a fridge. are these panels not going to work for this generator?Thanks in advance,

Comments

  • afakenafaken Registered Users Posts: 1
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    I have been stocking up on a battery bank for our home. I have (12) 200amp 12v interstate batteries. They are very large and weigh about 125lbs each. The plan was to connect them in parallel to have a huge storage. We are on grid and will be installing a 7.35kw solar system.

    Is there any way you would need something like these to complete you system?
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,204 admin
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Exactly what voltage and ah battery bank size are you thinking of using?

    You CS panels should work fine with the MPPT charge controller.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    I'm in central Ca.and only need 6 of these , where are you located?
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    I am hoping for 12v , leaning toward AGM batteries 600-800ah is the goal, but i'm a newbee, we have property in Mexico and will transfer any materials down there .
  • SolarPoweredSolarPowered Solar Expert Posts: 626 ✭✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Your question is extremely vague, I don't know if you are on grid or off grid, and just toying with off grid.

    You can use micro inverters in parallel with 2 islanding inverters for off grid, reason being is that the islanding inverters have switching so one would have to be switched for ac 1 while the other would be switched to generator, in the case of sunny islands as an example.Reason being that the micro inverters need a dedicated sine wave, from one of the 2 islanding inverters.

    Then you would want to have separate (2) battery banks at 48V (I.E sunny island).

    You could do it less expensive using the magnum inverters, but I believe reliability down the road becomes an issue. I don't know how the xantrex prosine will help you.

    You would need atleast 10 panels for one island inverter. So you really only need 30 micro inverters. You can sync the sunny islands to communicate to determine their dedications.
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?
    Your question is extremely vague, I don't know if you are on grid or off grid, and just toying with off grid.

    You can use micro inverters in parallel with 2 islanding inverters for off grid, reason being is that the islanding inverters have switching so one would have to be switched for ac 1 while the other would be switched to generator, in the case of sunny islands as an example.Reason being that the micro inverters need a dedicated sine wave, from one of the 2 islanding inverters.

    Then you would want to have separate (2) battery banks at 48V (I.E sunny island).

    You could do it less expensive using the magnum inverters, but I believe reliability down the road becomes an issue. I don't know how the xantrex prosine will help you.

    You would need atleast 10 panels for one island inverter. So you really only need 30 micro inverters. You can sync the sunny islands to communicate to determine their dedications.
    Didn't think I could use the enphase inverters, I am only planning a small 3-4 panel mobile system(for now that I can roll around)I only mentioned the micros because if the panels were only built for the micros that would make sense why the Canadian Solar spec sheet says on grid only, but the specs were really close to what all the off grid retailers sell.I'm wanting 2000 watt max out of the system primarily for power outage fridge power and a few lights. Can I use the enphase inverters on a small system affordably with smaller inverters. any info or links would be appreciated
  • SolarPoweredSolarPowered Solar Expert Posts: 626 ✭✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?
    deepstage wrote: »
    Didn't think I could use the enphase inverters, I am only planning a small 3-4 panel mobile system(for now that I can roll around)I only mentioned the micros because if the panels were only built for the micros that would make sense why the Canadian Solar spec sheet says on grid only, but the specs were really close to what all the off grid retailers sell.I'm wanting 2000 watt max out of the system primarily for power outage fridge power and a few lights. Can I use the enphase inverters on a small system affordably with smaller inverters. any info or links would be appreciated

    That isn't what you stated earlier...
    deepstage wrote: »
    Sorry if this has been covered, I have 40 of these panels ,and read on the CS site these were on grid only, I bought 40 Enphase 215 with them but I am trying to build a battery power ?,

    I will remind myself not to reply to this thread any further.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,204 admin
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    If you are looking for an 800 AH @ 12 volt battery bank and a 2kWatt AC inverter--The Xantrex Prosine has good reports here (as I recall)--But if you are starting with a new system, I would highly suggest 24 volts. That will cut charging current from ~80 amps to ~40 amps, and cut the AC inverter's input current by 1/2... Allowing you to use much more reasonable size power cables and, possibly, smaller/less expensive charge controllers.

    Power = Voltage * Current, double the voltage, you have 1/2 the current. I would only stick with 12 volts if you have a lot of 12 VDC native loads. If most of your loads are going to be powered by the AC inverter--Skip 12 volts and 12 VDC loads and go with 120 VAC loads. Much easier to wire and get things like 120 VAC LED lamps, charge cell phones, etc.

    And for a few things, 24 VDC is not bad (water pumps, even marine lighting/large truck accessories, etc.).

    Put two panels in series for Vmp-array~60 volts, two strings in parallel for Imp-arra~16 amps, and you will get:
    • 4 * 240 Watt panels * 0.77 panel+controller derating * 1/29 volts charging = 25.5 Amps typical max charging current @ 24 volt battery bank
    You can use a 30 amp controller from Midnite Solar (Kid) or a Rouge MPPT type controllers very nicely.

    MidNite Solar The Kid Charge Controllers and Accessories
    MPT-3048 MPPT PV Charge Controller 30A - 12/24/36/48v

    We normally suggest a 5% to 13% rate of charge... 5% is fine for weekend use. 10%+ is usually a better choice for full time off grid cabin/home.
    • 4 * 240 Watt panels * 0.77 panel+controller derating * 1/0.05 rate of charge * 1/29 volt charging = 510 AH @ 24 volt maximum battery bank size
    • 4 * 240 Watt panels * 0.77 panel+controller derating * 1/0.10 rate of charge * 1/29 volt charging = 254 AH @ 24 volt nominal battery bank
    • 4 * 240 Watt panels * 0.77 panel+controller derating * 1/0.13 rate of charge * 1/29 volt charging = 196 AH @ 24 volt minimum "cost effective" battery bank
    While it is sometimes possible to use the Enphase inverters with certain off grid AC inverters--It is not going to be cost effective or practical for this setup. Just use an MPPT charge controller with your CS panels (they will work fine with MPPT charge controllers).

    You cannot use a PWM controller "efficiently" with the CS panels because they are not a "standard" 12 volt or 24 battery bank Vmp voltage... Nominally, for an efficient PWM system, a 12 volt battery bank should have Vmp-array~18 volts and a 24 volt battery bank should have Vmp-array~36 volts. You cannot get the CS panels/array to support either of these voltages (12 volt or 24 volt) battery bank efficiently. Therefore, you really need to use an MPPT charge controller or look to buy/trade for some different solar panels.

    But, I would price out a system with MPPT controller. The pricing with "cheap" GT Panels and "expensive" MPPT controller may end up cheaper than "Vmp~18 volts panels" and a PWM controller.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Some things are not making sense here. First the OP states he purchased 40 CS panels and 40 Emphase panels with them. To me that's a total of 80 panels.
    Later he states he's only planning on a small 3 or 4 panel mobile system.
    Who is having who on? Or am I totally missing something here?
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    What I'm trying to say is I have 40 CS6p-240m and 40 enphase inverters in stock, paid for ,was trying to use the panels only on this small project. I thought most here would Know what a enphase 215 was.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Seems clear enough to me:
    He bought a package deal of panels & micro-inverters and wants to use some of the panels for a small off-grid system.

    He would not be using any of the Enphase inverters for this.

    The panels are called "grid tie" because they have a Vmp which is not directly suitable for a battery-based system. The MPPT controller solves that issue.

    You will not need 600-800 Amp hours @ 12 Volts to run a refrigerator. Nor would four of those 240 Watt panels charge so much battery. They would charge 600 Amp hours @ 12 Volts or even better 300 @ 24 (you would need four panels). That would be more than enough power for a standard 'frige and a few other things as well.

    Also a "Welcome" to afaken and a warning that you can't "stock up" a battery bank; if they are not being charged and maintained they are dying. In fact they are dying even if they are being maintained. Batteries are something you do not want to buy piecemeal, or used.
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Thanks BB thats exactly what I was looking for, I know that the system is a little weird but I want to play around with12/24v solar for a future project and acclamate myself to it without blowing up a bunch of expensive equipment. Your advice on 24V is well received Thanks again
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Thanks for the reply, great info ,I will be interupting a few circuits at my current home to try and run them with the fridge, (mostly lighting and a big TV, I am planning to watch the amps/voltage , I want to cycle and use the system every day, I have had Inverter/Charger in an RV and liked it , so I guess thats why I was thinking 12v, But have not messed with Solar panels in the loop, Thanks again
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    A Kill-A-Watt meter is your best friend; you can use it to measure the power usage of anything you want to keep going during an outage and know how many Watt hours you'll need to supply.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,204 admin
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    With solar, the amount of sun (your location/local weather patterns, etc.) is also a key player in solar... Guessing that you are in the Fresno California area. fixed array, tilted to 37 degrees from horizontal, using PV Watts:



    Month
    Solar Radiation
    (kWh/m 2/day)


    1
    3.01


    2
    4.55


    3
    5.85


    4
    6.78


    5
    7.04


    6
    7.20


    7
    7.37


    8
    7.47


    9
    6.91


    10
    6.11


    11
    4.45


    12
    2.79


    Year
    5.80



    Assuming a minimum of 4 hours of sun (upwards of 10 months without using a genset):

    4 * 240 Watt panels * 0.52 typical off grid system efficiency * 4.0 hours of sun per day = 1,997 Watt*Hours "minimum average" of 120 VAC 60 Hz power per day for ~10 months per year

    Of course, in the summer, you can use much power power during the day time.

    Have you figured out what battery bank you want? For example, if you do a 254 AH @ 24 volt battery bank, assume two days of storage and 50% maximum discharge:

    254 AH * 24 volts * 0.85 AC inverter eff * 1/2 days storage * 0.50 maximum discharge = 1,295 Watt*Hours of AC load per day (and/or night) from battery bank

    Get a Kill-a-Watt type meter to figure out your load mix to "match" what is available from solar... Don't plan on your base/full time loads to be 100% of predicted output--But closer to 66-75% -- On cloudy days, you usually want to cut back (or run the genset more)--During sunny weather, use optional loads (irrigation pump, clothes washing, etc.).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    Yes Fresno area,Leaning towards 4 Costco Interstate 6v 220AH @ $98 ea w/core, allready bought the killawatt meter, pretty cool. Just Bought a 24v 1800 prosine, will be purchasing the Midnite solar Kid controller next, Thanks for the help.
  • SolarPoweredSolarPowered Solar Expert Posts: 626 ✭✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?
    Seems clear enough to me:
    He would not be using any of the Enphase inverters for this.

    How is it he can't use any of the micro's? According to the SMA islanding diagram, OP could. This diagram shows use of on grid slave string inverters with communication of the the island.

    You can do the same with micro inverters but because there is no communication between the micro inverters and the sunny island to simplify, a secondary island inverter in this case would need to be used, but atleast it doesn't require any additional MPPT equipment, but the 2 islanding inverters require communication for the transfer switching and both require seperate battery banks.

    SMA is also currently working on a micro inverter/island solution to simplify the communications between teh island and micro inverters, the harvest efficiency is just that much better.

    As far as cost impacts though it is about 35% higher in costs than a standard hybrid/off grid system.

    Sunny_island_inverter.png

    Sunny_island.png

    Sunny_island_communications.png
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    I didn't say he can't; I said he wouldn't be. I do know how AC coupling works.

    Now go price a Sunny Island.
  • deepstagedeepstage Registered Users Posts: 9
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?

    thanks for the backup,some of us are new to solar and inverters, So whats an OP??or do I wanna Know.
  • AuricTechAuricTech Solar Expert Posts: 140 ✭✭
    Re: Canadian Solar Panels on Grid only CS6P-240m?
    deepstage wrote: »
    So whats an OP??or do I wanna Know.

    In this case, it's you ("OP" = "original poster").
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