fuselowawgthickfuselowawgthick Registered Users Posts: 1
edited January 11 in Solar Beginners Corner #1
I have searched on this forum about supercapacitors but, it seems the smart people say it's a waste. I beg the differ. Don't tell me they are expensive toy batteries. Don't tell me no. Don't tell me negative information about supercapacitors. I want someone to give me layouts. That's all. 

I have seen some rigs set up with supercapacitors. But they, the people who built the rigs, don't go into great detail of where to put it in the installation of their solar power system. 

I see that they use the supercapacitors for when the amps kick up very high so, it doesn't draw the battery banks power so much and because deep cycle batteries can't handle high fast peak of amperage. It works just like a high watt sound system in a car. One solar rig had a sound system supercapacitor; seemed more on the plug and play side and user friendly. And this will kick on only at high amp draws.

I have also seen some rigs that have supercapacitors that you get from electrical panels; they have to put restors between each supercapacitors. Some put them somewhere before or after the capacitor idk. This system seems to run the supercapacitors consistently.

Can anyone elaborate more and maybe help me with understanding this more on paper? Tell me how to set a supercapacitors in my solar rig?

I would like to put one in my rig. I will be having motors that will have high amp draws on start up and if this supercapacitors method is true to help high start up draws with motors than, this will help my battery bank. I am a visual and paper learner. So if someone can spell it out on paper it will help me out to the fullest.

Here are some visuals on a supercapacitors fast cycle with or without a deep cycle battery bank: 




  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,961 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Caps of any kind, are rated in power from 0 to their Max Volt spec. So say 0-53V
    A 48V battery only provides usable power from 48-53V  ( a 5V spread) All their power comes from that small voltage range.  If you attempt to use a super cap only in the top 5V of it's range, you will loose power quickly.

    It's fine to use one to handle peak surges, where it can charge and release faster than a battery and maybe spare a bit of battery cycle wear, but for it's expense and danger (they eventually fail, sometimes catastrophically) and a low inductance fuse (which is REALLY expensive)  there is just not a lot of perceived benefit. Standard inverters cannot use their wide voltage range, and as the volts get lower the amps go up and then you are into giant cable sizes.
    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

    gen: ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 5,401 ✭✭✭✭✭
    What is your rig or, what is a rig?  You would be the first I have heard of to live offgrid and power a home this way, for very long.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
    E-mail [email protected]

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,936 admin
    Here is a thread with some supercapacitor "math"

    If you need high surge capable battery bank, the common options are AGM (still lead acid batteries, but can discharge at much higher rates than FLA), to Li Ion (LiFePO4 is common for off grid/RV battery chemistry).

    Ultra capacitors generally have a fairly short life (last I looked, 5 years max, real life has been shorter in some applications). And they simply do not store very much energy vs batteries. If you need high current for fraction of a second (subwoofer at 10 Hz, or 1/10th second of "energy")--Yes Ultra/Super capacitors work OK... If you also need hours of energy---Not so much.

    1 Farad = 1 amp * 1 second of storage. We do our battery storage in Amp*Hours --- Or a factor or 3,600x larger storage rating (3,600 seconds per hour conversion factor).

    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 5,401 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The subs were playing loud at the 49er tailgate in the Blue lot. I know Bill is not a 49er fan but avoid the cheese this week OK?

    In my opinion it takes some very high end design to make an LFP reliably discharge at the the high rates of LA. If you need those high rates which most do not.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
    E-mail [email protected]

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