This project, though tied to the grid, was designed to provide the net power needs of the client and not just a few hours of backup power. With an output of up to 3.5kVA, it could power at least one air conditioner unit, a side-by-side refrigerator, a washing machine, microwave alongside a television, blender, electric grill, multiple energy saver bulbs, slow cooker, laptops and fans.
Twelve (12) 340W half-cut monocrystalline Era Solar panels were connected in four (4) strings of three (3) panels each.
In this particular project, space was a major consideration. The choice of a half-cut cell solar panel for this installation was informed by this as well as by market realities. Since at least 2019, half-cut panels have been displacing the traditional mono and poly panels. Manufacturers of high-powered panels, that is panels that are rated from beyond the 360W that is the optimum for most panels, to panels with power ratings up to 600W, now exclusively depend on half-cut technology. This allows more power to be drawn from fewer solar panels and lesser installation space.
In a half-cut solar panel, more solar cells can be squeezed into the module without any significant increase in the size of the panel, whilst at the same time reducing the resistance of the module. Learn all about half-cut solar panels here.
Twelve (8) 200Ah Ritar AGM batteries, at 48V each were used for the installation. They were installed in a non-living area of the house in a metal rack with front end terminals. The role of batteries in a solar power system is provide the DC that is to be converted to AC by the inverter for use in appliances and to store energy produced from solar panels for later use especially in the absence of sunlight and grid power. They contribute the most to the total financial investment on the system.
The choice of AGM batteries was because they are the safest battery design. They emit gases only when severely overcharged. They eliminate worries about explosions. They are also maintenance-free for life and do not require constant maintenance.
A 3.5kVA Cobalt™ inverter was used in designing the system. The Cobalt™ brand of inverters is made in the United Kingdom. They are built for rugged power and physical environments.
General Features of The Cobalt™ Inverter
The Cobalt™ inverter incorporates a battery charger and an automatic voltage regulator.
It is a pure sine wave inverter. Read more about pure sine wave inverters here.
It has hybrid capabilities, thus, it can be used with a battery pack, solar panels and grid power. As an intelligent inverter fitted with an in-built automatic transfer switch, the cobalt inverter able to automatically select the preferred source and switches the load accordingly.
It incorporates a smart charger. It is sold as an inverter/charger.
It has displays that show the state of the inverter.
Home, Factory and Office Integration
The Cobalt™ inverter come in black metallic casing built to complement both interior home, office and exterior factory designs. The Cobalt inverter is noiseless and emits no fumes. It is made to be mounted on walls.
Two 80A Fangspun charge controllers were used in designing the system. The work of a charge controller is to keep the batteries in a solar panel-deep cycle inverter system from overcharging by regulating the charging and discharging of the battery.
The Fangspun is a direct clone of the Outback FLEXmax. Built for high performance, it can handle high amounts of DC volts and convert them to 12V to 60V for battery banks. It comes with a very high maximum input voltage capacity, up to 80A, making them perfect for large-scale installations. Learn more here.
In addition to the protection features provided by the inverter against overload and overcharge, the system incorporates extra protection features including AC and DC circuit breakers and surge adapters. They offer additional protection to the client's investment. They also make it easy and safe to disconnect the system from the panels in the case of emergencies like lightning that could damage the inverter or solar panel fires.
SolarKobo helps its clients in Lagos and elsewhere in Nigeria make the best possible choice of all solar products including solar panels, batteries and charge controllers that meet their peculiar power needs and fits their budgets. We also have university-trained engineers who provide the best possible installation services on order.