Sunfish - Different question

mlailmlail Registered Users Posts: 22
OK, I see where Sunfish by Clarian is stating their new product line will be a type of plug in solar panel with a micro-inverter. I know these will have some differences from the described layout but they sound basically the same. So my question is this:

If you can plug a Sunfish into your AC outlet and it allows the owner to reduce the forward speed of their power meter. Can this be done with regular panels and micro-inverters?

Thanks,

Comments

  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Sunfish - Different question

    "Regular panels and micro inverters" as in Enphase? The output from which is 240 VAC, so you'd better not stick a plug on the end and hook it to your household 120 VAC. And if you plug it directly in to a 240 VAC outlet there's something else you should know:

    Such an install would be illegal.

    All grid-tie installs, no matter how small, require the cooperation and permission of your local utility.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,018 admin
    Re: Sunfish - Different question

    Yes. Plus an electric utility would have difficulty in finding such a setup unless the meter is turning backwards when read or if it has some sort of anti-tamper setup to detect reverse power.

    And depending on the meter/utility--your meter may turn backwards if the GT system output is larger than your loads during part of the day, or may simply not turn backwards, or with some new digital meters may actually bill you for sending power to the grid (i.e., the meter always turns forwards no matter the true direction of current flow).

    But there are safety issues too... If you plug this into your 120 VAC 15 amp outlet (say you have ~1,000 watts of panels+GT inverter), your local 15 amp branch circuit now has 15 amps from the breaker + ~XX amps from the solar panel. So, it is possible to supply upwards of 30 amps to a load elsewhere on that branch circuit (short, too many appliances, etc.) and cause an electrical fire.

    This last point is why I think that "plug in" systems vs dedicated hardwired type solar PV GT systems will never legally allow plug-in GT systems.

    -Bill "just a personal opinion" B.
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mlailmlail Registered Users Posts: 22
    Re: Sunfish - Different question

    Thanks guys for you fast response. Many of us read various things and it is nice to have someplace to ask before any harm is done!

    Thanks again
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