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Sid Genetry Solar

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Everything posted by Sid Genetry Solar

  1. The 10kw generator sounds nice and big, but if I understand correctly, you have 2 GS 6kw inverters right now. Adding up the loads comes to some really steep numbers...let's assume the water heater is 4,500W (pretty common size) + dryer at 4,800W (guessing, could be as high as 6,000W), the window unit at 1,800W + the well pump at 2,400W...adds up to 13,500W continuous possible total. Bit of an issue that. Considering the 6kw limitations of the design, wiring and internals of the 6kw GS inverters, I'm thinking that the best way to handle this sort of power draw would be with 2 separate load panels, balancing out the loads on each panel, and one inverter per panel. Panel A: 220 water heater (~4500W assumed = 18.75A) 220 well pump (9.8A) Panel B: 220 dryer (20A?) 230 A/C window unit (7.3A) Since the use of any sync mode (parallel, split-sync, 3-phase, etc.) renders charge unusable on any "slave" inverters, the only way to utilize the full capacity of your generator (or avoid melting the input wires on the GS inverters) will be to have separate output panels, and both inverters running in normal system mode. If you didn't plan on being able to run >6kw on a generator, the inverters could be internally rewired to 120v single-phase each (preventing use of 240v charge), and they could be split-synced together for a full 12kw (pretty well balanced) output.
  2. So if it's going into OVERLOAD protect, that can be adjusted (depending on the control board version, there may be some DIP switches that set both the overload current + the charge current). OVERHEAT protection is different, and much more common (especially at the loads you're running, i.e. 2.6kw)...which doubling the transformers should help. You could technically just parallel the 2 transformers across each other. WARNING: Make sure the transformer phases are the same, otherwise you're pretty much guaranteed to end up with blown FETs! To make sure the phase is correct, you can parallel what I call the "primary" (FET sides, PJ calls it "O/P"), and then parallel connect ONE of the "secondary" (PJ "I/P) 3 leads together. With the inverter running, use your DMM in AC volts to check across the other 2 pairs of leads, to verify that there is <5vAC difference between them. (If you see 480v or 240v difference, the transformer phases are definitely opposing! Swap either both of the "primary" wires, or try cross-color matching up "secondary" wires.) Do NOT under any circumstance connect "parallel" wires that have a voltage potential between them, or you'll risk smoked FETs. If you encounter issues or questions, post here, and we'll sort it out. And remember that any experimentations are at your own risk 😉. I can give pointers to accomplish what you might desire, but no guarantees come attached...
  3. SORTA. The only part you'll be able to "combine" would be the transformer itself. OK, and maybe the mainboard (with the FETs on it) if your working inverter has 2 FET drive connectors on it (they're basically the same), sorta like PJ does with their bigger rated inverters. Depends what parts you have. Definitely can't use 2 control boards.
  4. Here's what I can come up with for the PJ firmware beep codes: Short Beeps (usu. indicate mode switching / minor alert) ATC (Automatic Transfer Control) from AC Mains to Inverter mode --OR-- button function acknowledge AC Mains Voltage Too Low -> Inverter Mode AC Mains Voltage Too High -> Inverter Mode Regular Beeps (usu. indicate alarm/error) Battery Overvoltage error "MOS" thermistor over temp / Output Voltage Error "FAN" thermistor over temp ...10 / 30. Overload Low/High I don't see any "4-beep" trigger anywhere, which of course doesn't help identify the issue.
  5. As with any new design or idea, it's usually an extremely good idea to have a "prototype" stage, before rushing a design into production. I've sorta skipped that in the past on some designs--sometimes with success, sometimes without. At any rate, while the Rev. C prototype board DOES work for the core functionality of driving FETs for an inverter, I've discovered quite a few mistakes with the design that will need tweaked--and so many in fact, that I'm going to have to do another prototype run just to make sure I get all the issues worked out BEFORE sending it to the manufacturer and asking for 300pcs to be manufactured... Issues I've discovered include: reversed polarity on BOTH AC voltage sensors (input and output) completely unusable scale on BOTH external AC current sensors (input and output again)--got my math wrong, and it's 4x what it needs to be connected BOTH new AC current sensors to non A/D pins on the CPU, rendering them basically useless miscalculated the feedback circuitry for the new LCD power sense chip (using a Chinese power monitor chip now, as the CS5463 is nearly 7 times the cost...and almost impossible to find) need to swap 2 A/D inputs on the CPU to allow use of an internal comparator that can instantaneously shut down the FETs if the battery current exceeds a set threshold (12kw safety protection)--and I'm NOT very good at rewiring 0.8mm spaced pins! used the ULN2003 for driving the relays, only to discover that it's only good for 0.5A--and the new relays pull 650mA and 1.2A. The latter also overloads the on-board power supply--so I need to switch to a push-pull relay driver IC (L298D being considered right now), and drive the relays in a push-pull "single coil" manner instead of a "double coil" manner (which also reduces their power consumption by 1/2) On the bright side, I did find that while one of the relays is really tall, it will in fact fit in GS 6kw chassis without hitting the lid (or the LCD board). AND...if I make a slightly modified LF Driver board (probably will have the PCB manufactured bright red so it's obvious!), the Rev. C design will be compatible with the existing GS mainboards/MOS boards. Might need a small resistor bridge board for backwards-compatibility with the current-design WiFi (LCD) boards, and if all goes well then, we should be able to offer Rev. C upgrades if perchance someone feels that they need it. (For GS 6kw inverters, there's next to no reason for a Rev. C unless you need the upgraded 2-pole input relays with auto voltage switching.)
  6. Probably are Rev. A.1 or Rev. B boards...which are basically identical, except for changing the AC input relay design and a bit of associated support circuitry on Rev. B. Like @kuhrd said, the Rev. C board largely is an iterative improvement (adding more sensors, fixing several design challenges, and changing AC input relays yet again)...but the core design is identical. Without going to the complicated "parallel harness" method used by other inverter manufacturers, there really isn't a great way to handle surge capability in parallel mode--that is, surge beyond what 1 inverter can handle. Surge is the Achilles heel of parallel mode unfortunately. I'd say that ideally a split-sync setup with 2 single-phase inverters would be the best way to achieve a doubled surge rating. But that requires an internal inverter rewiring. Be careful not to mix up hardware reversion vs software/firmware version. The 1.1r3 is the current latest firmware, and I'm working towards 1.1r4 after working a few bugs out. This firmware works on all GS control boards--A.1, B and C (latter in the prototype stage right now).
  7. I would presume then that you ordered them for split-phase "daisy" configuration?
  8. Neither potentiometer adjusts frequency, that's controlled by the CPU (and one of the pushbuttons--if present). One pot adjusts battery voltage feedback, the other adjusts AC voltage feedback. Note that PJ inverters will characteristically have serious regulation oscillation, so this may be part of the voltage change.
  9. Like @dicksonpointed out, this isn't a software limitation as much as it is a hardware limitation. You're running Li-Ion, not LiFePo4? 12S is about as difficult-to-handle as it could get, as it's smack right in the middle between 2 standard sizes. 10S Li-Ion is a 36v nominal...and 14S Li-Ion is 48v. 12S is 43.2v nominal, 36v empty, and 50.4v peak. I have heard of customers running a 48v inverter on a 12S battery...and it simply doesn't work. With a GS inverter configured for 48v input, the transformer ratio is 7.5 (32 -> 240v). Absolute minimum battery voltage for a pure sine output (at no load) is 32 * sqrt[2] = 45.248v. At 36v in, you're guaranteed a square wave with pretty much zero regulation ability with any significant load--in other words, very much useless. However, for higher voltages, the inverter can simply reduce the PWM width to regulate down. In short: it's a lot easier for an inverter to handle a higher voltage (throttle the PWM back) than it is to handle a lower voltage (where do you go??) We have several customers running 12S LiFePo4 battery banks on GS inverters configured for 36vDC; as far as I know, there are no issues at all. Minimum battery voltage for pure sine output is ~34vdc. Yes, the posted range of a 36v inverter is up to 48vDC--however, by adjusting the battery nominal setting, you can easily reach a max of 52v if need be. The high end is limited by crosstalk or FET drive challenges...but we have a customer running a 48v 6kw GS through the wringer at 66v...and thus far, no issues. (That's an equivalent peak of 49.5v on a 36v system.) I don't foresee any potential problems at up to 50.4v, though I will note that Lithium-based batteries reportedly have a much longer lifetime if they aren't charged to and held at 100% all the time. Charging to a peak of 4.1vpc works out to 49.2v, which should be perfectly fine on a 36v inverter.
  10. So the "lock out" would leave the settings intact, just the user would have to go through the warranty-void unlock procedure to access said settings. I do plan to make the default settings as lot less aggressive, which should help with noise. Ideally, most customers won't need to touch these settings...I'm not removing them by any means though. Will try to make it so that inverters in the field that have customized fan settings will remain as such--but newer inverters going out will have the fan settings locked. The issue with customers changing said settings is that then the inverter doesn't run right...then they end up consuming our time to fix said problem--or say that the inverter is junk, etc., etc. One customer had the inverter go into overheat shutdown without the fans ever turning on--by setting the fan PWM option to 20Hz (but the GS fans require 20KHz in order to accept a PWM throttle). Yes, the fans will throttle up to full speed 95%+ PWM...but with the rapid temperature rise by the time the fans finally spun up, the fans couldn't prevent the inverter from surpassing the shutdown threshold. (Didn't damage it.) Another turned the "off speed" up, and then couldn't figure out why the fans kept running all the time.
  11. Well, the inverter could (should) have an ATS/UPS switch, but seeing as there are no settings that can be adjusted...these functions are of comparatively little value. Their inverter needs a solid redesign...hardware, manual and all 😉.
  12. No, this is not electrically, programmatically, or technically possible. Firstly, "daisy" backfeeds power out of the AC input terminals. You should never under any circumstances connect the AC Output terminals of any inverter (Genetry Solar or otherwise) to a live AC source. Secondly, split-sync requires the AC input for a sync and power on signal...and the AC output is separate from this signal Thirdly, most "daisy" setups are 240v split-phase. Split-sync requires 2 inverters hardware configured for 120v single phase for an output of 240v split phase. System setup is not fluid. It has to be decided...well...at system setup.
  13. Yes, it is highly confusing. I could make several guesses as to why/what, but at the end of the day electrical reality is what will prevail... I can tell you that the center-tapped secondary of the transformer is going to handle any set of split loads. (L1 - N - L2). That's how I wired up my 9k PJ when I first got it (and it still runs that way, although the only PJ parts left are the mainboard and chassis!), and how most users will wire it up. Possible reasons why PJ would put up that note: Overcurrent protection is only on L1 (deductively, L1 - N for 120v and L1 - L2 for 240v) LCD "meter" reading is only on L1 (for 240v) and N (for 120v) Pulling from the L2 - N circuit won't have any overcurrent protection (for what little good it does), nor will such a load register on the LCDs. But it'll still work.
  14. If the surge amps are too high for the FETs, the inverter likely will blow up. No surge protection as in, there's no way to instantaneously shut down if a short-circuit condition is detected.
  15. It's enameled aluminum wire, no copper to speak of. Reduces cost and weight, at the expense of slightly thicker wire size for the same power output. What's the no-load current of the inverter?
  16. 4-5 seconds...that should be plenty of time for a GS inverter to frequency-shift the grid-ties into off state. Not to mention driving the FETs cleanly...they shouldn't blow out. There will always be a voltage spike when the grid-ties suddenly turn on, and dump 5kw of power into the system. Would be very helpful if the grid-ties supported frequency-shift throttling...that'd make it super easy to control the array with a GS setup. Most of the older units cheaply available don't support linear frequency-shift throttling. Of course, the GS throttle could easily be limited to a specific minimum if that is deemed necessary for surviving a high-powered assault by grid-tie inverters ðŸĪŠ.
  17. Bingo, thanks a lot! Works perfectly on my phone...
  18. If you can get mDNS to work on an Android device, by all means let us know; I'll happily update the manual. Here's what I found though: https://android.stackexchange.com/questions/49188/how-to-get-mdns-working-for-chrome-on-android
  19. It is a fine song and dance, I must admit. I'm open to viable suggestions and ideas; currently the fan speeds are directly controlled by the measured temperatures (as sort of detailed in the manual). These temperatures (as you noticed) lag behind the load on the inverter, as does the generated heat. The constant rise/fall of temperatures can be caused either directly (as a result of the increased fan speed cooling the heatsink) or indirectly (noise in the measurements and/or different thermistors switching control on the fans). The fans add their own delay to PWM throttle control as well. If you'd like the fans' minimum speed to be directly determined by the total load on the inverter, you can use the ProCool settings (Proactive Cooling) on the appropriate fan channels. These will ramp the fans up directly based on the load, regardless of temperature--and if the temperature rises past the "minimum" set by ProCool, the fans will throttle past that. You can tweak the fan settings, but please make sure you understand what they do before you adjust them. Sean has reported several problems with customers messing with fan settings they didn't understand, resulting in the inverter overheating...or really weird fan behavior. (One of those got all the way to me having to spend half an hour on the phone with the customer to reset the default fan settings.) Unfortunately, this means that we will have to lock the default fan settings (which we will be tweaking a bit) unless the inverter is unlocked. I don't like to do that, BUT...there's unfortunately a reason that lawn mowers are plastered with warnings saying, "Sharp blades, do not stick your hands under the mower deck."
  20. (Mistook you in brief for a PJ customer who'd just bought a 15kw PJ....) That's good to hear. Care to post any photos for the rest of us to drool over?
  21. I suspect that this has to do with the input circuit, which for 220v input inverters must only consist of L1 / L2, and Neutral / ground-bonded neutral must never come CLOSE to the inverter.
  22. @pilgrimvalleyFirstly, you bought a PJ inverter. Consider yourself very fortunate to be able to reach 1/2 of that rating continuously...with a more reasonable expected maximum sustained continuous output of 30%. Most "cheap" inverters utilize either deceptive ratings (i.e. advertising the peak)...or they will use simply fallacious numbers. I will note that for wiring up a PJ inverter...the L1 / N output circuit more often than not has twice the transformer wire than the L2 / N output circuit. But for practical purposes, this won't mean much.
  23. I'd be quite curious how long the PJ inverter lasted before the magic smoke came out. GS inverters have native GTM frequency-shift throttling (i.e. if there's nowhere to put the power, they will shift the frequency up to a max of 2.5Hz to shut the GT inverters off). But that currently takes a second or 2--and of course will restart the grid-tie inverter's timeout for restart. Could result in the inverter getting slammed with full grid-tie output every 5 minutes, so...
  24. OK, so "Throttle" is the sine table multiplier for the SPWM output that directly drives the FETs. If the FETs are held at 0% throttle (due to the regulator dropping the throttle to zero as a result of the grid-ties forcing power into the inverter), the FETs are literally holding a dead short across the transformer secondary...holding both leads to battery positive. If they aren't fully turned on, they will end up dissipating pretty much all of the grid-tie's power. 24v inverter? (guessing from your comment about 15v) If the microinverters reach 268vAC out, considering that PJ likes to use 230->18v spec these days, that's (268 / [230 / 18] = 20.97vAC * sqrt[2] = 29.65vDC max out. And if the microinverters reached a full 268vAC out, the PJ definitely reached zero throttle due to the AC overvoltage condition. Lead acid batteries are pretty "movable", and as such don't constitute a solid dump load. See, if at normal throttle (which for a PJ is closer to 100%), the batteries aren't absorbing enough energy to keep the AC voltage in the desired space, the inverter is going to spiral the SPWM throttle down to try to regulate the desired AC voltage. Initially this causes the FET's to work as an inadvertent boost charger, pushing the battery voltage higher and higher--but if the battery doesn't hold it's ground, there's still no place for the 5kw of grid-tie power to go. Down the throttle spirals towards zero--and as the FETs are poorly driven, the likelihood of them dissipating a significant percentage of this 5kw is pretty high. And that's not something they can survive for very long. If the micros lost sync, they had better shut down instantly...
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