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Solar Hot Water

Tracker 1&2

Array 3

Control Center

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We plan to install 18 PV panels on the Studio roof with a Sunny Island 3000 US 240 V inverter.

4/27/08 I am so impressed with the trackers performance that I am reconsidering putting the studio PV panels on to a Wattsun 225 tracker again. I have 300 feet of #6 Cu wire left over from the turbine installation that will do nicely to connect a third tracker up the hill to catch earlier morning sun and possibly later evening sun. The trackers collect hours more direct sunlight per day compared to roof mounted PV panels.

6/24/2009 I ordered 16 Suntech STP 170 watt solar panels and 2 KC 135 panels today. This will load our Sunny Boy 3000 US perfectly. 2,980 Watts. Total PV will now be 6.2 KW. These panels will mount on to the studio roof. Now that grid tie looks imminent, roof mount for these last planned panels will be adequate.

7/16  Still accumulating all the necessary parts to assemble the array on our roof. ALMOST THERE! Now each of two strings has 8-STP 170 panels and 1-KC 135 panel. 42 PV panels now complement our three arrays

7/20  The final section of wall is ready to install our last inverter to handle 2980 watts from 18 panels on the studio roof.


7/24 All wiring between the control center and studio is complete. The treated lumber to act as a panel mount is bolted in place and most of the cross members are screwed in. I wanted a disconnect near the panels and there is a DC disconnect at the inverter as well.

7/25 The two ground rods are driven in behind the building and a 4 gauge copper runs up to the disconnect. The frame is complete and the roof surrounding the frame is reinforced with new screws holding it down.


Note the ruff edge of the bottom roof. I blew a stump with four sticks of dynamite and took out the edge of the roof as well, many years ago. All steel roofing is from recycled back in 1972 and still works. Most building materials in this studio is from recycled. The structural wood is a hundred years old and had cut steel nails to pull out before we used it.

7/27/09 Array 3 is officially !ON LINE! I still wait on the last panel to complete the array, 17 of 18 are wired and producing power.




An interesting note; The suspension accidentally configured within the wooden mounting frame may pad our panels from large hail damage. This array has boosted our daily output to 35+ KWh, just in time for hot summer need of air conditioning. It takes all generation from array 3 to power our 240 vac, 25,000 BTU air unit all day and into the evening when it gets over 90F.

 The completed array 3. On overcast days array 3 generates more than the trackers, but the trackers, just a bit more watts, generate 35-50% more on good sunny days.

12/14/2010 Next time I'll install one base mount 4 x 4 for every panel instead of one 4 x 4 every other solar panel. I have twist in the solar panels between 4 x 4's.

02/25/2012 Now have added another string, (ARRAY 4), of 10 to the roof with 6 additional panels taking the place of our unused solarhydronic panels, making a string of 16 panels to a new SB4000US inverter, and brings the total panels in our system to 60 with 9.6 KW nameplate power.



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