PV (solar panel) and charge controller with battery

Depending on where you are you might want electricity.

Solar power is a convenient, low maintenance way to get electricity if you have sunlight.

For this example I will consider a 80W 12 V solar panel and a charge controller capable of 6A at 12 Volts.

The panel

80 W  (maximum power)

12V

P = VxI

P/V =I

80/12 = I

6.66 A =I (maximum current)

 

The charge controller

12V

6A

P= VxI

P = 12 x 6

P =  72W

Close enough to matched, remember the panel lists it maximum power not typical power rating.

A charge controller is a fancy battery charger which can put unused solar power into stored energy into a battery.

Usually there is a load circuit for things you want to run directly off the solar panel and a battery charging circuit. For this example there is a maximum load of 72 watts from the controller load wires.

For a larger load than the controller allows disconnect the battery from the charge controller and use the charged battery.

There is often a wet type battery for flooded lead acid cells check you documentation as to whether it is connected to the positive(+) or negative (-) terminal of the flooded battery.

A typical arrangement:

PV charge controller and battery wiring diagram.

For 12 Volt setups the car cigarette plug and socket system of connectors is a good idea, simple and common. There is also a wide variety of electrical items made especially for this connector format.

 

The connectors on solar panels are waterproof, the connections on the charge controller are not, make sure they are waterproofed or kept away from water.

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