” Going green” is a term that’s being uttered with increasing consistency by everyone from the news media to CEOs of big companies. We can all do our bit to minimize our carbon footprint and conserve the environment so that our children and grandchildren may also enjoy this gorgeous and distinct planet of ours. One method to do this is to make use of solar energy to provide power to electrical devices around your home or office and, in an age where frequent power outages have become commonplace, it might just be the way to go. Using solar power will not only dramatically lower raw energy consumption, but likewise implies that you will not be left in the lurch when the lights go out.
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As far as gate automation goes, there are a variety of solar alternatives readily available. However what size photovoltaic panel do you buy? What sort of autonomy can you anticipate in case of a power interruption? I aim to respond to these and other concerns in this post. We will look particularly at DC-powered gate motors, as the photovoltaic panel will be used to charge the battery or batteries.
1. Examine your motor voltage
Essentially, there are 2 versions when it pertains to DC gate motors, specifically 12V and 24V models. The 12V designs typically utilize single battery to provide power to the motor while the larger 24V motors – which are usually created for commercial applications or homes with heavy traffic flow such as townhouse complexes – have two batteries linked in series. It is very important to know whether you have a 12V or 24V gate motor as this will figure out how many solar regulators you need to buy.
2. How many additional gadgets are connected?
This will enter play later, when you identify the present draw and energy usage. Things like infrared security beams, intercoms, remote receivers in addition to the motor’s control card itself, all draw existing and will have to be taken into account when choosing a solar panel.
3. Variety of hours of sunlight
Certainly, the amount of nominal charge you will obtain from a solar panel depends on how much the sun shines on it every day. If you reside in an area that’s mostly overcast, solar energy might not be the response. Five hours daily or more are generally needed for your motor’s batteries to remain in a totally charged state.
4. Do the maths
Now that you know what your motor voltage is, how many ancillary devices are linked to it and the number of hours of sunshine you get per day, you can do the following computations to identify the size of the photovoltaic panel you require. But first, remember to inspect your gate motor’s documentation to see what its quiescent current draw is.
Next, get an amp/hour rating by multiplying the quiescent existing draw with 24 (the variety of hours in a day). For example, if your motor’s PC board draws 50mA of present, the amp/hour rating will be 1.2 Ah (0.050 x 24 = 1.2 Ah). Perform this estimation for all your peripheral devices and also for your solar regulator. If you haven’t decided on a regulator yet, you can utilize a 30A regulator (which draws about 10mA of existing) for the sake of your computation. Build up all the overalls for the motor, controller, secondary devices and regulator.
Think about an average domestic sliding gate that runs an average of 10 times per day. It is fitted with a 12V domestic operator and also has a set of safety beams linked.
MOTOR CURRENT: 10 (the number of daily operations) x 0.111 Ah (Nett energy/operation) = 1.11 Ah.
ELECTRONICS: Motor PCB = 0.384 Ah.
Security beams = 1.60 Ah.
Solar regulator = 0.24 Ah.
TOTAL ENERGY DEMAND: 3.334 Ah.
5. Pick a panel size.
You are now all set to select a photovoltaic panel. The following schedule should give you an idea of the charge currents and charge outputs associated with various size photovoltaic panels:.
Solar panel capability Charge Current Charge.
20W monocrystalline 1.2 A 6.0 Ah.
40W monocrystalline 2.4 A 12.0 Ah.
65W monocrystalline 4.0 A 20Ah.
67W monocrystalline 75W 22.0 Ah.
The charge output has been figured out by multiplying the charge existing by the variety of reliable sun hours each day. I used 5 hours for the sake of this example.
Last but not least, you need to select a photovoltaic panel that has a charge capacity greater than the overall demand of the system. In other words, if the demand of your gate automation system is 3.334 Ah like in the example above, a 20W panel will be sufficient.
6. You’ll need the following …
When purchasing a photovoltaic panel, likewise ensure that you purchase a solar regulator. A regulator keeps the charge rate continuous so that your motor’s battery is not over or undercharged. If you have a 24V system, you’ll require two solar regulators considering that many regulators are rated for 12V systems.