Wind Energy Totalizer

ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
Is there such a thing as an energy totalizer for wind generators? The reason I'm asking is because when I replied to a thread about my cousin's windmill made from Hugh Piggott's instructions, it reminded me that he has no idea what the capacity/capability of his mill is. All he knows is that it meets his limited needs for lighting and water pumping. I know the Trimetric is a good tool to measure what you actually use and what you put back into the battery bank. But, what is the unrealized potential of the rig?

Thanks for the feedback!
Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE

Comments

  • gww1gww1 Solar Expert Posts: 963 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    I use a doc watson for my two hugh piggot design turbines. I will tell you the highest amp peak, the lowest battery voltage, the watts and amps as they are being made, a total of the amps made and the total of watts made. It will not tell you how much was taken out of the battery unless you get two of them. It is about $65 and most people say you should put a beefier shunt on it costing more but I didn't and knock on wood, so far so good.
    I hope this helps
    gww.

    Ps if you just want to see what it is putting out at the time with no collecting of data, they sell really cheap amp meters that you can put on it.
  • ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Thanks for the info gww1.
    So I went on rc-electronics site to read up on that Doc Wattson and I would like to clarify how I would connect it for the purpose explained above. I'm thinking that this would be the way:
    Attachment not found.

    I was thinking that I need the auxiliary power on in case the windmill stops because of no wind so as not to loose the cumulative data. So... in this case, the windmill would go on the "source" side and the controller would go on the "load" side, right?

    Thanks!
    Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,050 admin
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Yep... The Aux Power should work just connected to your main battery bank (as I understand).

    Doc Watson type meters are rated to something like 60+ amps... But I would be very careful about putting continuous current through it that is more than ~15-20 amps (watch for over heating).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Thanks for the heads up BB!
    I think I read that there might be a way to increase this capability by placing the meter on a shunt. That surely would help preventing overheating, right? How would that affect the readout?

    Cheers!
    Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,050 admin
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Yes, using a shunt would work... However, I know of no way to recalibrate the Doc Watson and similar meters. So, for current flow, you would need to use a 10:1 shunt or similar and multiply current/AH/WH readings by some magic factor.

    Or an Arduino project:

    http://forum.pololu.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5415

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Wow... That flew right over my head:confused: I have no idea what these guys are doing...
    Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE
  • gww1gww1 Solar Expert Posts: 963 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    ram
    which turbine did your son build and at what battery bank voltage? I just used a three wire hook up. I have a 48 volt battery bank that I put the red wire at the mid point of the battery bank. So it is powered by 24 volts. I just double all the numbers on the doc wattson. 48 volts would take the meter over 60 volts which is why the mid-point connect. My turbines being 48 volt means that my amps are lower then if it were a 12 volt bank. I have seen a peak of 44 amps. I have seen peaks of 35 amps just today. On the site you looked at they probly sell a companion shunt if you upgrade. The doc is rated for an optimistic 100 amps with out the up grade. Almost every one recomends the up-grade however I thought I would try it without it and all has been good for about 1 and 1/2 years.

    It does violate your warrentee if you upgrade it even though everyone selling them also sellsw the exterieor shunt. I would put the little toggle switch on it as you might decide to collect daily to see what differrent winds mean or which months are better. I write my number down daily on a calender and reset the doc every month. I guess it would depend on the turbine and how windy the site is before I decided to replace the origional shunt. Wiring like I do will leave one wire unused and you don't need the plug in wiring harness.

    I have spent a lot of time in my garage just sitting and watching the doc. It also helps a bit if you have watched it some, that if you make some change in the turbine, bigger blades, higher tower, ect. to see what they have done for you. Although with wind sometimes it is better to just watch it spin and guess cause when you actually know what it is doing it can at times bring disapointment.

    All the best
    gww
  • gww1gww1 Solar Expert Posts: 963 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer
    Wow... That flew right over my head I have no idea what these guys are doing...

    Don't feel bad, it flew over my head too.
    gww
  • ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer
    gww1 wrote: »
    ram
    which turbine did your son build and at what battery bank voltage?

    He has a 12V bank. The turbine is home made, so there is no worry about warranty:p. However, I do not know any details about how he built it so I can't say what voltage the mill is putting out. I do know that he has a large (large to me...) diversion load of resistance. The diameter of the turbine is about 6-8ft. Knowing this, should I worry about overheating the Doc Wattson?
    Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE
  • gww1gww1 Solar Expert Posts: 963 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    12 volt 8' blades is probly a 700 watt turbine if he followed hughs plans so at the turbines rating it would be about 58 amps. It probly won't hit that often but you would probly be safe with the beefier shunt. My two turbines are rated 10 amps each and with them both I saw 35 amp today. Yes you probly need to change the shunt to safe gaurd you sixty dollar investment.
    gww
  • gww1gww1 Solar Expert Posts: 963 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    To replace the shunt you have to crack the case and use the wires the current shunt is hooked to. I hear it is critical to try and not over heat when soldering the new shunt on.
    gww
  • ramlouiramloui Solar Expert Posts: 103 ✭✭
    Re: Wind Energy Totalizer

    Great! Thanks for the info gww1.
    Off-grid cabin in northern Quebec: 6 x 250 W Conergy panels, FM80, 4 x 6V CR430 in series (24V nominal), Magnum MS4024-PAE
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