Author Topic: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?  (Read 696 times)

mcsarge

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Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« on: February 15, 2022, 08:35:53 PM »
Hi, Our main installation is a 2 x 3 270 Watt panels into a Classic 150 with a WZBJr. To provide the small amount of power needed while the main panels are covered with snow in the winter, we have deployed a set of the old panels and the old MPPT controller for them. I would like to replace the old solar controller because it is old and really hard to setup correctly.

My question is can replace the solar controller for these "winter" panels with a "kid" and if I do is there any way I can connect the WZBJr to both?


Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

boB

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2022, 03:13:40 AM »

Hi MC.

The Kid is good for 30 amps out.  That is around  24V * 30A = 720 watts.

80W X 2 panels is 160 watts so you should be just fine there.  As long as the series voltage of the 2 -- 80W panels are higher, as usual, than the battery you are charging.

'You can't connect one WB Jr. to both the Kid and Classic BUT you can use two Wb. Jr.'s on one shunt and then run one purple wire to the Kid and the other purple wire to the Classic.  Just different WB Jr.'s

boB
K7IQ 🌛  He/She/It

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2022, 11:55:01 AM »
Since I already have a Classic, would it just make more sense to add another and put them in follow-me mode? I would like to add 2 more 100Watt panels to the "Winter" set. I am concerned that the solar control I have now is throwing off the classic in the Summer when both are trying to charge the batteries. Having another Classic would solve this, right? Is it worth the additional cost?

And follow-up, the panels I have left over are of 3 different types (80W, 90W and 100W), 2 of each kind. Should I leave them in that config (3 groups of 2) and hook a couple of the sets up to a second Classic or should I reconfigure them into a series of 3? All are old, for instance, the 2 90W ones I have hooked up now can charge the batteries with about 5-6A when in direct winter sun, this is about 144 Watts, so not too bad for really old 90W panels.

Matt
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

ClassicCrazy

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2022, 01:00:03 PM »
Since I already have a Classic, would it just make more sense to add another and put them in follow-me mode? I would like to add 2 more 100Watt panels to the "Winter" set. I am concerned that the solar control I have now is throwing off the classic in the Summer when both are trying to charge the batteries. Having another Classic would solve this, right? Is it worth the additional cost?

And follow-up, the panels I have left over are of 3 different types (80W, 90W and 100W), 2 of each kind. Should I leave them in that config (3 groups of 2) and hook a couple of the sets up to a second Classic or should I reconfigure them into a series of 3? All are old, for instance, the 2 90W ones I have hooked up now can charge the batteries with about 5-6A when in direct winter sun, this is about 144 Watts, so not too bad for really old 90W panels.

Matt

Matt - is there any way you can configure some of your  panels to be a series string that is within 10% of voltage of your existing Classic strings ? Since it doesn't sound like you are maxed out on the capacity of your Classic , I am wondering if you can just add your winter string onto the existing Classic ?

Larry ?
system one
Classic 150 , 5s4p  Kyocera 135watt , 12s Soneil 2v 540amp lead crystal for 24v pack , Outback 3524 inverter
system two
Classic 150 ,5s 135 watt Kyocero , Jakiper 48v LiFePO4 , Outback VFX 3648 inverter
system three
Midnite KID MPPT 24 DC in to  12 volt AGM batteries

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2022, 12:29:26 AM »
Larry,

I could, but the issue is that the main panels get covered with snow for a couple of months during winter - the cabin is unoccupied and on an island, so no way to clear them. So I placed the "winter" panels on the side of the cabin facing south and they get some sun when the other panels are covered and the sun is low in the sky.

So I think I need an additional solar controller.

Also, we will add 3 more panels to the configuration one day because we have the capacity on the classic.

Matt
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

ClassicCrazy

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2022, 01:01:08 AM »
Larry,

I could, but the issue is that the main panels get covered with snow for a couple of months during winter - the cabin is unoccupied and on an island, so no way to clear them. So I placed the "winter" panels on the side of the cabin facing south and they get some sun when the other panels are covered and the sun is low in the sky.

So I think I need an additional solar controller.

Also, we will add 3 more panels to the configuration one day because we have the capacity on the classic.

Matt

well not really -  if the winter panels were getting some sunlight  they would just charge through the Classic and wouldn't matter if the other strings of PV were buried in snow .  And since you aren't over the rating of the Classic wouldn't matter if they were all getting sunlight at the same time. But it sounds like they wouldn't contribute much in summer anyway due to their angle so wouldn't be a problem. I think the Classic can take some over current from too much PV but from what you describe that probably wouldn't happen even with the extra new PV on there. The trick would be getting the winter string voltage to within 10% of your normal PV strings.

Larry
« Last Edit: February 18, 2022, 01:05:20 AM by ClassicCrazy »
system one
Classic 150 , 5s4p  Kyocera 135watt , 12s Soneil 2v 540amp lead crystal for 24v pack , Outback 3524 inverter
system two
Classic 150 ,5s 135 watt Kyocero , Jakiper 48v LiFePO4 , Outback VFX 3648 inverter
system three
Midnite KID MPPT 24 DC in to  12 volt AGM batteries

UpNorthMan

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2022, 09:57:37 AM »
Just a thought, could you add another breaker to your e panel before your CC. Label one  summer and one winter. Then wire your vertical winter panels with all combiner boxes  etc  to the new breaker. When you close up for the winter, just flip the correct breakers. Even if your batteries aren't fully charged when you leave. I would think your winter panels would fill them up.
Ed
1000W panels Kid CC 184 ah battery bank @ 48v
Weekend cabin, 250w inverter.
Waiting for the new inverter to be released so I can finish my install!

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2022, 11:47:32 AM »
Ed,

That is an interesting thought and I might do that. That brings up a new question, and pardon my ignorance. I have 3 sets of 3 old solar panels:

2  100 Watts with 17.1 operating V and 5.85 Operating A
2    80 Watts with 17.3 operating V and 4.63 Operating A
2    90 Watts with 17.0 operating V and 5.40 Operating A - Not going to use these.

I can probably mount 4 total panels on the side of the cabin. How would I arrange them? I only have enough room for the 100 and 80 Watt panels.

Assuming I disconnect my main panels in witer and hook these panels up:
Q1: Should I connect them in series so that the PV is 17.1+17.1+17.3+17.3 = 68.8V? Would the Midnight Solar be able to work with that voltage? (I think yes)
Q2: Will using this arrangement unduly limit the current?

Thanks for any insight.
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

ClassicCrazy

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2022, 12:24:16 PM »
Matt
You can put the specs  from PV into string calculator and try different configurations of series and parallel to see what is best.
https://www.midnitesolar.com/sizingTool/
If the series string voltage from the two 100 watt and the two 80 watt are within 10% of each other that would work.
You need some higher voltage above the battery voltage for the mppt to work right so not sure if two 17v in series would be high enough for your 24v battery pack.
If you put them all in series , since it sounds like the voltage of all your PV a fairly close then you current on the 100w ones would be limited to the 80 watts .
I think that is how that works.

Larry
« Last Edit: February 23, 2022, 12:31:14 PM by ClassicCrazy »
system one
Classic 150 , 5s4p  Kyocera 135watt , 12s Soneil 2v 540amp lead crystal for 24v pack , Outback 3524 inverter
system two
Classic 150 ,5s 135 watt Kyocero , Jakiper 48v LiFePO4 , Outback VFX 3648 inverter
system three
Midnite KID MPPT 24 DC in to  12 volt AGM batteries

UpNorthMan

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2022, 06:41:53 PM »
Matt,
 I would mount them in 4S configuration, 3S at a minimum.
100w, 100w, 80w, 80w

If you ever got a chance to mount all 6 then.
Series1) 100w, 100w, 90w
Series2) 90w, 80w, 80w

There are a couple things to keep in mind.

1) Imp and Voc should be within 10%of each other.

2) The smallest panel in a series sets the pace for the string.
Assuming Voc and Imp are the same for each panel.
Input 200w, 100w, 50w = Output 50w, 50w, 50w or 150w total output.

3) Your total VOC for the string should be at minimum 1.33 times the max charge voltage to maximize your Classic.
  Assuming you have a 24v Lead acid battery in a unheated battery box. And a charge voltage of 32v (temperature compensated)
  The 32v x 1.33 = 42.6v VOC minimum

  I'm assuming your panels are around 22.0 VOC
  22.v x 3 series = 44v VOC
  22.v x 3 series = 66v VOC
  22.v x 4 series = 88v VOC

4) The colder your panels are, the higher voltage they produce.

I have a cabin in northern Minnesota. Some 20 miles away, the coldest record low is around -62F / -52C. I have a panel configuration of 5S2P. My panels appear to be very similar in specs as yours. They are something like 100w 22Voc and 17.4 Imp. I use a Kid CC and per the sizing tool, my panels won't go into Hyper VOC until past -100F The most power production I've seen produced was around 925w on a cold clear winter day.

Ed
« Last Edit: March 12, 2022, 09:32:44 AM by UpNorthMan »
1000W panels Kid CC 184 ah battery bank @ 48v
Weekend cabin, 250w inverter.
Waiting for the new inverter to be released so I can finish my install!

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2022, 01:38:18 PM »
Ed,

OK great information. I went back and looked at the photos I got of the backs of the panels and here is what I have. All 6 panels have Voc that are within 10%, but the 80W and the 100W are not within 10% on Imp, though the 100 and the 90's are.

I think I will be able to mount 4 of the 6 on the side of the main cabin. I have an existing SolarBoost 50 that I am using now and if I continue to use that - (it can accommodate only 2 panels in series so I would have to arrange them as 2s2p.

string 1 - 100W panels: 34.2V and 5.85A
string 2 - 90W panels 34.0V and 5.4A

When combined in parallel does it mean I will get about 17V and  11.25A?

I do not think I can disconnect the Classic from the main panels, this year the snow cleared off them for 2 days and the system went from depleted to nearly 100%. I think I just have to run them as a separate system and I will disconnect the Winter Panels in the Summer.
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

UpNorthMan

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2022, 06:40:27 PM »
Matt,
I'm not familiar with a SolarBoost 50 charger, but I believe the input would be a total of 34v and 11.25a or around 380w. That would be if the panels were at standard test conditions. More likely 80%or 304w in the winter. I know age does lessen the output of the panels and you will also loose some output due to the brightness of the sun.

Your input voltage won't be much above your charging voltage. So you won't get a lot of benefit from the mppt CC. But I would think that whatever your amps in will pretty much be amps out.

I would go for it. With these panels mounted vertical, you should see a noticeable improvement compared to your current setup.

I don't think the classic uses much power in standby. Leaving on shouldn't be a problem.

If I recall correctly, you also have a remote monitoring system. The extra panels should help with the daily load.  Out of curiosity, what is the daily draw? I'm thinking about adding some monitoring myself. Not 100% sure what I can all monitor. The Kid isn't as flexible as the Classic. I also want to add a couple security cameras.

Ed
1000W panels Kid CC 184 ah battery bank @ 48v
Weekend cabin, 250w inverter.
Waiting for the new inverter to be released so I can finish my install!

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2022, 12:03:04 AM »
Ed,

I get the age and non-ideal conditions, I am just checking my math. I think I will switch to the 90 and 100 Watt panels but I may still get a Kid because it is far better than the SB50 and would give me better MPPT.

I currently have alot of equipment running for the monitoring - Here is everything I have going:
1 Cradlepoint LTE Router
1 POE Switch
1 5V switch
1 external WiFi Router
2 Raspberry Pis
2 POE Cameras
1 48V Boost converter (for POE cameras)
1 12V Buck converter (for external WiFi router)
2 5V Power supplies
1 Classic 150
1 Solar Boost 50
1 Low Voltage Cutoff (shuts everything down except the Solar Controllers when the battery voltage gets too low)

2 Battery Cameras with solar panels that do not use main power source

The whole thing draws about 900 mA at battery voltage (24) as measured through the WhizBang.

This Summer I am going to deploying a power management system that will allow me to remotely shut down the various systems when the panels get covered and I need to conserve power.
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF

UpNorthMan

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2022, 10:06:46 AM »
Matt,
It looks like you have a pretty nice monitoring system. Maybe someday I can get a system setup similar to yours. I'll also have to use a cell network. At&t just installed a tower a few miles away. I now have reliable service, but all that electronic stuff will be creeping in. The cabin has been a place to get away from it all.

I gave out some bad advice earlier and have corrected my post #9. I should have used VOC instead of Imp for the minimum voltage for the efficient use of a MPPT CC. (maximum charging volts 32.v x 1.33 VOC = 42.56v VOC) The rest of the math still works the same, and I would continue on the same path. In the link below is a Midnite manual that does a good job explaining everything.

https://www.midnitesolar.com/pdfs/DIY_Manual_-_Dec_2021.pdf

The nice thing is if you wire the Kid in before your shunt. Your Classic will still read the input and output power to your batteries and you won't have to change any of your monitoring equipment.
 
When I got out of bed, it was -30F. Can't wait for Spring to show up!

Ed
1000W panels Kid CC 184 ah battery bank @ 48v
Weekend cabin, 250w inverter.
Waiting for the new inverter to be released so I can finish my install!

mcsarge

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Re: Can I pair a Kid with a Classic 150 and WBJr?
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2022, 05:28:10 PM »
Ed,

So we have that issue too, the island is a respite from technology, for the most part. The electronics are all in the battery room, and the access I get using the Cradlepoint and the antennas is limited to the equipment. We do not use it for communication, though we are thinking about expanding it as it would allow some of us to work while we are up on the island and so be able to stay for longer periods. I don't think that will be really feasible until tarLink is available up there and then I could work there all the time.

The existing SB50 is wired in front of the shunt now, so I see the power that is pushed into/pulled from the batteries through the Classic and it can pretty accurately estimate the SOC even when it is not the charge source, so I will do the same with the Kid. I think I am going to hang the 2 90W and 2 100Ws in a single string into the Kid and then into the batteries through the shunt.

I this is what I will have (all theoretical):

Code: [Select]
String 1   100W----100W----90W------90W
Voc        21.3V---21.3V---21.3V----21.3V = 85.2V
Vpmax      17.1V---17.1V---17.0V----17.0V = 68.2V
Amps       5.85A---5.85A---5.40A----5.40A = 5.40A

For a total of about 368 Watts. Actual watts will probably be around 310-320 since I get about 85% from the 2 80Watt panels I have in service now.
Off Grid Island in Ontario Canada (Beaverstone Bay)
Primary: Classic 150 + wbjr; 3s2p HES 270watt
Winter: SolarBoost 50 MPPT (into wbjr); 2 x Sharp NE-80EJEA 80watt
Pack: 4s2p ROLLS S6-460AGM 6V for 24V pack
Inverter/Charger: Trace DR2424
Call Sign: KG4EUF