schneider context XW6848, 5548, 4048 inverter opinions?

2

Comments

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Explain the gen support feature, if it shares loads with the battery that means the inverter must be on. If the inverter is on then the power will be a mix of clean power and dirty power?
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    I am not an inverter engineer... My guess.

    You have a genset (or any AC voltage source) that is (more or less) connected directly to the AC loads.

    Put a current transformer and voltage tap in the middle and connect to inverter electronics.

    Connect a GT Inverter (really a Hybrid inverter-charger in "GT Mode" to the wiring down stream of the current tap.

    The electronics measure the direction and amount of current from the AC source. You program 10 amps @ 120 VAC maximum (1,200 Watts) as the maximum from AC input.

    1. No AC. AC Mains disconnects from Hybrid Inverter, operates in Off Grid Mode (supplying loads from Battery Bank power--AKA as voltage source)
    2. AC Power, light to moderate AC loads. AC mainst connected to AC output. AC inverter is in GT/Charger mode. Electroncs measure AC in current... If AC loads+AC Charger are less than 10 amps, take difference and run GT inverter "backwards" to charge the battery bank (at needed battery voltage and current). GT inverter operates as "current source" (AC Mains provides AC Frequency/Sine-Wave Voltage).
    3. AC Power, Heavy AC loads. Electronics "see" AC mains >10 amps, stop charging and go to GT mode. Pump enough current from GT Inverter to AC Loads to keep AC in at 10 amps or less. (GT Inverter or "Current Source" mode).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yep, if your genset wobbles in frequency, the inverter tracks it. not a problem that I can see. With the combox or SCP, you can set the frequency and voltage window for the generator.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    BB. wrote: »
    For a standard inverter charger--Yes.

    If you have an AC to DC Battery charger -> battery bank -> AC inverter, then your output is completely isolated from AC power variations.

    In general, most modern electronic devices are pretty frequency independent. Actual peak sine-wave voltage and wave form can cause problems with power supplies.

    Motor based systems may behave badly with frequency variations. Had a 50 Hz IBM Selectric Typewriter from Europe running on 60 Hz US power (behind a transformer)... Typewriter would occasionally have functional error because of the 20% higher line frequency.

    Another would be clocks/timers that use AC line frequency for timing.

    -Bill


    Wow a selectric! Was there are a Saturn 5 nearby?

    The Gen support is nothing new as the XW has had this since new in 2007. The old SW + had it also and they did a version in the SW also. From the SW + manual, "If the level of the AC current exceeds the user programmed generator support mode, the inverter will switch to a generator support mode and create waveforms that are larger in voltage than the AC source or generator. This prevents overloading the AC source."

    They called it a bi-directional topology and basically if the inverter waveform created, is a larger voltage than the paralleled AC source then power flows from the batteries to the load. If the waveform voltage has a lower voltage than the AC source, power flows from the source to the battery." I think my Trace inverter from my sailboat in the 1990's had this but we did not have a generator.

    It works well in many applications but not always. There are certain generators that for whatever reason just do not work well. There are 2 ways that I guarantee this for my customers, the first is to use the Honda 6500 inverter genny and it's cousins, the second is to design the home for not needing a generator. Ok, there are three, use an Iota battery charger and leave the headaches to someone else.

    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Those Lota units have a terrible efficiency, I would rather stick to a honda unit, but they never go for cheap..
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    new2PV wrote: »
    Those Lota units have a terrible efficiency, I would rather stick to a honda unit, but they never go for cheap..


    Do you really think that the Iota efficiency makes much difference when you are running off a generator?
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    And just to be clear--Iota (capital "i") efficiency is a "different issue". More or less the issue is the difference between VA ("Volt Amps") and Watts.

    Because of the way the Iota front end is designed (a very standard design practice is to use diodes and high voltage capacitors to convert from AC line voltage to a high voltage intermediate DC voltage)--The VA usage of the Iota is "high" because of this... However, as far as I know, the Watt usage is not an issue.
    • Power = Watts = Volts * Amps * Cosine (V vs I phase angle) = Volts * Amps * Power Factor (PF varies between 0.0 and 1.0, 0.95-1.0 is good, 0.5 to 0.8 is not really good)
    • VA = Volts * Amps = Watts / Cosine (phase angle) = Watts / Power Factor
    What does that mean to the end users? Basically, you have to design your wiring, breakers, and Generator Rating for VA --- Which is Volts * Amp rating. Because with poor PF, the loads take higher levels of current.

    However, fuel efficiency wise, Watts is what costs you fuel usage.

    So, the Iota requires a larger Alternator (transformer, wiring, or AC inverter if driving an Iota) because of poor Power Factor. However, this does not affect the fuel consumption (at least what we are talking about here) of the generator.

    For various reasons, it would be really nice if Iota was to redesign their power supplies to have a Power Factor Corrected (PFC) front end for their chargers... But, alas, have not seen any yet.

    Xantrex has made some pretty nice PFC battery chargers. There have been some issues with availability over the years, but the older TC family of supplies had very good reviews. and they should be very generator "friendly" (you can run a larger TC2 on a small genset vs the Iota)..

    http://www.xantrex.com/power-products/battery-chargers/truecharge-2-2.aspx

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    ....

    It works well in many applications but not always. There are certain generators that for whatever reason just do not work well. There are 2 ways that I guarantee this for my customers, the first is to use the Honda 6500 inverter genny and it's cousins, the second is to design the home for not needing a generator. Ok, there are three, use an Iota battery charger and leave the headaches to someone else...

    Amazingly, it works fine with my 650RPM listeroid, with it's power pulse flicker. I suspect it works because it has a large, copper & iron alternator, not 2Kw worth of raw material speced at 4Kw.

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    mike95490 wrote: »

    Amazingly, it works fine with my 650RPM listeroid, with it's power pulse flicker. I suspect it works because it has a large, copper & iron alternator, not 2Kw worth of raw material speced at 4Kw.


    I always thought you were amazing and the patterned lawn mowing technique you used down south back in the days of the Xantrex Forum.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I always thought you were amazing and the patterned lawn mowing technique you used down south back in the days of the Xantrex Forum.
    The lawn in Los Angeles ? That was selective seeding with clover. !Attachment not found.

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Thanks Bill for your explanation..I will just let the XW charge the batteries I think that is the easiest way. I want to keep the generator small as possible, but Is this most fuel efficient method? Or go with a big gen to charge faster and run less.. Whats best?
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    new2PV wrote: »
    Thanks Bill for your explanation..I will just let the XW charge the batteries I think that is the easiest way. I want to keep the generator small as possible, but Is this most fuel efficient method? Or go with a big gen to charge faster and run less.. Whats best?

    Was this answered in a previous post? please re-post if I missed it.
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    More or less, the most efficient (and healthy) way to charge Lead Acid batteries is probably 10-13% rate of charge up to ~80-85% of state of charge for the battery bank. Charging at >90% state of charge is much less efficient.

    Note that AC Battery chargers may have "power factor" issues... Some use (more or less) 100% of the AC current to charge the battery bank (this is Power Factor or PF ~0.9 to 1.0 rating or 90 to 100% of current and >85% efficiency). For non Power Factor Corrected Battery Chargers (PF less than 0.95%), you need a genset that is has higher VA (or Watts) rating to handle the "poor" power factor.

    For the generator--For gasoline/propane/natural gas gensets with fixed RPM, charging around 50% to 80% of rated load is probably optimum for the genset. Charging at much less than 50% of rated output becomes less fuel efficient (very roughly, at 50% to 0% rated load, the genset consumes around 50% of rated fuel flow). For generators that vary their RPM based on load (typically inverter-generators), they are somewhat more efficient and quieter with smaller loads vs fixed RPM units.

    For diesel generators, the minimum loading recommended is around 40-60% of rated output... For "modern" diesel (modern fuel/injection controls), it sounds like 40% of minimum rating is OK. For older (and possibly larger) diesel, you may be more in the 50% to 60% minimum load range (lightly loaded diesels can "glaze the cylinder walls", build up carbon deposits, and/or wet stack--Last I read here, modern diesels should not wet stack).

    So--As you can see, for best results you need to match your battery bank size to charger capacity to genset rating... If any one of them not a "balanced" component for the overall system needs, you can be less than optimum.

    For a "mixed" solar + Genset system, charging in the early mornings for 50% to 80% state of charge, and let the solar finish the charging.

    If you only are running a genset (no solar, string of bad weather), you only need to recharge >90% once or twice per week (assuming daily cycling of battery bank).

    Anyway, that is what I have read here/understand to be a good/efficient way to charge your batteries and keep them healthy.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    I should add, that 5% rate of charge for the battery bank is probably the smallest you would want to size the AC Charger + AC Genset for.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    BB. wrote: »
    I should add, that 5% rate of charge for the battery bank is probably the smallest you would want to size the AC Charger + AC Genset for.

    -Bill

    Well the batteries I am interested in are lifeline batteries and they can accept a charge rate of C x 5 so am 100AH battery can be safely charged at 500 AMPS, according to the spec sheet, but that sounds crazy to me? Is this a mistake in the battery manual?
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    No, it is correct. I would guess that Concorde has Aircraft and UPS applications for various models of their batteries. Very high discharge and charging rates are not uncommon in those applications.

    Aircraft, small batteries that are used to start a turbine can discharge in a few minutes attempting to start, and be recharged in those same few minutes. UPS systems may only be spec'ed to run for 15 minutes--Just long enough to start/warm up/stabilize a large genset. "Just enough Battery" for the job.

    In practice, for the typical off grid home, around 5% to 13% is the range of charging current we recommend. 10% or larger is "better" for a full off grid home and if you don't want to manage your power usage throughout the day. Typically >~13% means that you have an "oversized array/charging system". It will work fine, but your array will spend much of its time in "float". However, if you want to minimize genset run time, with the "cheap panels" we have today, having an oversized array (with a remote battery temperature sensor for the solar charge controller) is not a bad thing when bad weather hits/the kids&family come by for a visit.

    For generator charging, 10% to 20% rate of charge is typical. When you go over ~13% rate of charge, you really should monitor the battery temperature--They can overheat with higher charging currents, especially as the state of charge exceeds ~80-90% with "too much" charging current--Thermal run away is possible (many solar charge controllers do have remote battery temperature sensor options--very much worth it).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    new2PV wrote: »

    Well the batteries I am interested in are lifeline batteries and they can accept a charge rate of C x 5 so am 100AH battery can be safely charged at 500 AMPS, according to the spec sheet, but that sounds crazy to me? Is this a mistake in the battery manual?


    I am sure that after the warranty is up they will be happy to sell you a new battery. It is good that it sounds crazy to you and is one of the reasons that liquid lead acid have such nice long warranties. They are very forgiving of incorrect (high) voltage and can easily have their specific gravity checked.

    100 amp hour batteries are too small for an XW unless you are using parallel strings which is not good either.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    The rule of thumb for inverters is 100 AH @ 48 volt battery bank minimum per 1kw of ac inverter for lead acid batteries.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Thanks Bill, next question can I use a generator that only outputs 120volts ? How would the output be from the inverter, would one phase be dead or 120v on each leg but no 240 volt out? Or would the inverter make 240v and split the current?
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    You need to review the documentation/ask the retailer for sure--But the basics for the older XW family (don't know about the new lines with similar designations).

    The standard XW inverter needs a 240 VAC or 120/240 VAC split phase input or a 120:240 VAC transformer. And it will output 120/240 VAC split phase.

    However, it can be reconfigure (and different firmware) that takes the two 120 VAC transformers (internally) and parallels them into a 120 in/120 out AC inverter.

    Other inverter/chargers (different brands/models) have different options/supported configurations.

    Do you have a link to the exact model you want to use?

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    In other words, the XW series can be configured for 240VAC or 120VAC output. The generator used must be the same voltage that the inverter is configured to. I use a 120 - 240 step up transformer to get my little 120v generator to run loads through the inverter.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    I am looking at the new conext Xw6848 inverter, and I will contact Schneider and see what they say about a 120 v gen.
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    mike95490 wrote: »
    In other words, the XW series can be configured for 24VAC or 120VAC output. The generator used must be the same voltage that the inverter is configured to. I use a 120 - 240 step up transformer to get my little 120v generator to run loads through the inverter.


    Typo above, he means 240 vac or 120 vac. The manual requires 440 AH Battery for this inverter as a minimum. If you order a 120 VAC inverter it would be a mistake to do this on a large inverter. You should do what Mike did and use a step-up transformer.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Schneider says it needs a 120/v240 gen or it won;t qualify AC2. AS for battery size they said it would not be best but acceptable to use 200AH min. It could changed inside to 120volt moving some jumpers. The transformer would also waste a few hundred watts, they suggested to get a 240v genset.
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The step-up transformer only wastes 100w max (transformers are >95% efficient) Even a small, nearly silent eu1000 will run my base loads and still charge batteries (slowly). A 240V generator is usually about 5Kw for the smallest ones. All depends on what you want to do.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    Can you give me the part number for the transformer your using? The ones i am looking at are 250-300W loss...
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,697 admin
    I think the transformer kicked around here a lot is:

    Outback Power FW-X240 Auto Transformer (bare ~$380)
    Outback Power PSX-240 Auto Transformer (in enclosure ~$510)

    Xantrex also makes (I think they still do) an auto-transformer too.

    Here is Outbacks very nice manual that tells you what you can do with one:

    http://www.outbackpower.com/downloads/documents/autotransformer/manual.pdf

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    new2PV wrote: »
    Can you give me the part number for the transformer your using? The ones i am looking at are 250-300W loss...

    i'd have to dig it out. (some ebay find.) but you don't want too large of a transformer, the wasted power is a % of the size of the transformer, not a flat % of the power going through. And you disconnect it when it's not in use, so it's only lossy when you run the generator.

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    I got a new question on charge block setup. If I block the charge time so it never charges, and use ac coupling with micro inverters will it still charge the batteries with excess energy from the planned micro inverter array?
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
  • new2PVnew2PV Solar Expert Posts: 305 ✭✭
    gbaig wrote: »
    I need help in configuring ComBox for remote monitoring. I tried several ways but not able to see performance outside home network. I have a Service Provider router and Combox is connected with a separate router which is connected to ISP router. Thanks in advance

    My combox is still on order so I can't help you, but usually its the same set up as IP cams, where you need to get a web address like no-ip.com or .biz and forward your ports in your router.
    XW6848 inverter with 2 X mppt 60 150 CC , with Canadian solar 260Watt panels 2 x 3.5 kw array
Sign In or Register to comment.