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15000W LF, 48volt to 240 volt, what wattage?


Bear
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That's an ASL4. If my ASL3 can survive a sustained 3.5kW (albeit with very flattened peaks on the sine wave) then I would expect the ASL4 to survive 5kW or more 

I  have an  8kw  PJ  with ASL4  and  40 FETs  that will run a 5hp air compressor  with the rev 10.3  control board  wired 240 vac  L1  L2  60 hz .   The  rev 11.1 control board  that replace the working  rev 10.3 board  will not start the the 5 hp air compreesor .    This is the one of a kind PJ  8kw inverter  with the  mainboard  that is a solid block  with no cooling fin and  has 40 FETs .  

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Well ASL4 is a good point I suppose, but it all smacks of "Electronics club", nerds arsing around with "Hobby Electrics" 🙂 

To a point that is me, but there is serious **** going down in the world. Like our monetary system going down the tubes. Try getting spare parts in a Veimar republic type economy.....  I need something reliable.

To be honest, after reading everything, I have lost confidence. Not just in this brand but things from China in general.  The other day I bought an MPPT charge controller that turned out to be PWM, and the photo shows 48V but it was only 24v. Guitar pickups that are no where near the stated ohms, bridges that are unusable etc etc.

I have kind of made my mind up and getting an SMA Sunny Island SI4.4M-11 Inverter Charger 48V. It's only 4.4kw but it will give me genuine 4.4 for 30mins. It charges batteries (I don't know if it does LiFePo4 though), switches to the mains when batteries are low etc. Oh, almost forgot it has transformers so it looks like it may be Low Frequency, and it is a sealed unit so no damp air getting in.   And the best thing is, it's not Chinese, it's made in Germany.

 

 

 

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I have seen photos of those solid blocks and assumed it was a test unit,  but it seems not!  That solid block would have quite high thermal mass but quite poor heat dissipation capability so you can see what PJ was up to with that.  Using the thermal mass to allow short term high heat output from the FETs to give the appearance of the inverter being something it wasn't.

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2 hours ago, Bear said:

I have kind of made my mind up and getting an SMA Sunny Island SI4.4M-11 Inverter Charger 48V. It's only 4.4kw but it will give me genuine 4.4 for 30mins

I hope you get this as I will (selfishly!) be anxious to hear how it performs.  And if it is low frequency.  And if it's as reliable as you hope.  Made in Germany seems to promise a better quality.  I hope it's true too.

Those don't come in split phase, do they?

 

2 hours ago, TheButcher said:

I have seen photos of those solid blocks and assumed it was a test unit,  but it seems not!  That solid block would have quite high thermal mass but quite poor heat dissipation capability so you can see what PJ was up to with that.  Using the thermal mass to allow short term high heat output from the FETs to give the appearance of the inverter being something it wasn't.

I bought a upower 15kw 48v a few years back.  It was when upower was "new" as a name.  I thought I was buying a powerjack at the time.  I probably wasn't paying enough attention, as it appeared to be a powerjack with the same lame ad copy they always use.  The point is that it had the first 'small' mainboard I had ever heard of from powerjack, and it also had the solid block heatsinks without fins.  Seemed to me the dumbest thing powerjack had done in awhile (They have topped that since!) I had not then and still till just now had not heard of anyone else getting one of the solid block heatsinks.  Thought mine was one of a kind.

It is a v9 control by the way.  Anyway, it worked ok but heated up fast, so I did my usual mods to help cooling.  Unbolted the transformer, raised it up on rubber blocks, and added additional faster fans and independent fan control.  It ran ok, handled the usual house loads adequately and was in use for several months, but was very noisy because of the fan noise.  Went back to my older 15kw pj.  Much quieter.

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Everything is a compromise between cost and reliability. But even the highest quality (thus supposedly reliable) stuff sometimes fails prematurely.

As some have seen ffrom my other posts I have a PJ 8k (v1.4) from 2013 which still works fine. Unlike the Victron of the same era despite the Victron unit appearing to be much better designed (as viewed from an engineers perspective like mine) but completely unsupported by the manufacturer now. Whereas if my 2013 PJ failed, I could get the current version of boards from China and make it work again with fairly basic electronics skills.

The 2020 upower 8k is more efficient than the 2013 PJ but the ASL3 transformer isn't as large a mass as the 2x AS2 transformers that are wired in series on the 2013 PJ.

I've seen the ones with the solid heatsinks, and thought why on earth would any idiot do that!!?? Thankfully I've never received one like that.

Good luck with the SMA Sunny. It will certainly do what it says on the tin but how many times the price of a PJ/upower of equal capability? (use a 10kW or 15kW PJ/Upower for comparison as this number of chinese watts would equate to the sustained 4.4kW rating of the Sunny).

I agree with @Bear with the apparent apocalypse looming it is wise to start building a reliable off-grid power system amongst other things, but what happens when your expensive Sunny breaks and you can't contact the manufacturer, or they don't have spares? Or someone breaks into the garage and steals it for their own use... In my case I have spare batteries and a spare PJ inverter sitting in the house some distance from the garage so could reinstate power pretty quick in a post-apocolyptic world :).

However my real motivation for experimenting with off-grid power was that about 3 years ago I anticipated an 'energy crisis' due to all our nuclear plants being decommissioned due to end of life and little progress building new ones. So I decided to start building a backup as I knew grid prices would rise dramatically and availability may become intermittent. People laughed at me then, but now the chickens are coming home to roost! I did a 2 year fixed price with EDF energy in march 2020 at 8p/16p per kWh. Now the best rates (excluding the government capped rate which is well below market rate but set to rise by at least 50% in April 2022) is 16p/35p per kWh and we haven't even had a real still, cloudy, cold spell yet this winter to test the UK grid's extreme dependence on gas power generation...

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I've seen the ones with the solid heatsinks, and thought why on earth would any idiot do that!!?? Thankfully I've never received one like that.

I  never know what is inside of my 12v  8kw  powerjack from ebay .   The inverter with the solid block heat sink  still works good after 2 years  but  it get hot after 2 hours and  auto shut down .     I  do not think PJ  has any real engineer but buy parts from YiYen  and put something  together  that  works good enough for ebay .   The spare parts I buy thru ebay messages  do not  come from  PJ  but is ship  from unknown  city in China .   What an idiot would do that ?  I  happen to see  PJ  has parts and inverter  made in Russia  for them  but  forget the  website .   Is Russia  labor cheaper ?  

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2 hours ago, Paul said:

It will certainly do what it says on the tin but how many times the price of a PJ/upower of equal capability?

Two. 🙂  I got it at a very good price indeed.

Oh the garage, I'm bricking up behind the door lol.

Edited by Bear
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6 hours ago, Bear said:

To be honest, after reading everything, I have lost confidence. Not just in this brand but things from China in general.  The other day I bought an MPPT charge controller that turned out to be PWM, and the photo shows 48V but it was only 24v. Guitar pickups that are no where near the stated ohms, bridges that are unusable etc etc.

Yah, a lot of Chinese-designed stuff is simply thrown together for absolute minimum cost and sold with any sort of labeling that gets people to buy it.  Power Jack's #1 seller is their "8,000W 12v" unit...simply because of their marketing.  It works for sales, or they wouldn't do it...

Just had someone get a "256GB 4-way USB FLASH drive."  We've had fake sized-drives before--so I ran a handy Linux/Mac tool ("F3" - Fight Flash Fraud) which identified the actual size as basically 32GB.

But I've bought a lot of stuff from AliExpress that does the job well for a ridiculously cheap price.  Win some / lose some I guess.

 

3 hours ago, dochubert said:

I bought a upower 15kw 48v a few years back.  It was when upower was "new" as a name.  I thought I was buying a powerjack at the time.

U-Powers are literally rebranded Power Jack inverters with nothing except the sticker on the label changed to (usually) double the Power Jack rating.

 

3 hours ago, dochubert said:

and it also had the solid block heatsinks without fins.  Seemed to me the dumbest thing powerjack had done in awhile (They have topped that since!) I had not then and still till just now had not heard of anyone else getting one of the solid block heatsinks. 

I've heard of these, and seen photos a time or 2--but never actually looked at one myself. 

It might stand a half a chance at functioning EXCEPT for the fact that the PJ FETs are driven so poorly that they get far hotter than necessary.  Case in point: the GS 12kw prototype running at full bore (~300A through the FETs)...barely break room temperature with a fan on 'em.  Mathematically, they should be dissipating ~65W from a FET resistance standpoint; any significant amount higher is a result of driving/switching losses.

I don't like the "double row solid block" design not only for the lack of heatsinking ability, but also because they put the caps across the end of the heatsinks--putting them farther away from the FETs AND blocking the airflow to boot.

 

 

1 hour ago, dickson said:

I  do not think PJ  has any real engineer but buy parts from YiYen  and put something  together  that  works good enough for ebay . 

This is not the case.  PJ has in-house engineers and employees (I've seen photos of their test benches and assembly lines).  They wind their own transformers (I've have photos of the winding machine they have).  They make their own inverter chassis with a CNC laser cutter (it's broken down before, I heard about it), and have a partially automated bending machine to shape the cut pieces.  They cut and tap the screw holes in the chassis themselves.  All inverter assembly is done in-house by PJ.  (They outsource manufacturing of the PCBs, though they do hand-solder through-hole components.)

 

1 hour ago, dickson said:

The spare parts I buy thru ebay messages  do not  come from  PJ  but is ship  from unknown  city in China .

Power Jack's manufacturing facilities are based in Guangxi, China.  Parts you buy from PJ will either ship from China (where Power Jack is located), or one of their warehouses.

 

1 hour ago, dickson said:

I  happen to see  PJ  has parts and inverter  made in Russia  for them  but  forget the  website .   Is Russia  labor cheaper ?

Dunno where you saw this, but it is not true.  All of their parts are locally sourced from Chinese manufacturers and markets.  And they assemble their inverters themselves, in their own factory.

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5 hours ago, Paul said:

I agree with @Bear with the apparent apocalypse looming it is wise to start building a reliable off-grid power system amongst other things, but what happens when your expensive Sunny breaks and you can't contact the manufacturer, or they don't have spares? Or someone breaks into the garage and steals it for their own use... In my case I have spare batteries and a spare PJ inverter sitting in the house some distance from the garage so could reinstate power pretty quick in a post-apocolyptic world :).

If everything does come apart at the seams, even just a severe depression, how easily do you think you will be able to get parts out of China for the PJ to replace a failed board?  The best strategy would be to have a spare inverter or spare boards at hand already.

I have made the observation elsehwere about Victron et al's quality vs elcheapo Chinese or better quality but still less expensive Taiwanese stuff.  For the price of one Victron you could buy two MPP Solar (this assumes no need to start high current loads of course) devices, and put one in the cupboard so that when the inevitable happens you can do a quick switcheroo and be back in business.  That could be modified to have the Victron or other premium device as the main, with a cheaper unit as the backup.  You get the best of both worlds then.  A very reliable device that will gracefully handle any abuse you throw at it but should it fail for some reason (even an external one such as lightning damage) you can put the backup to work.

Of course for people that also have access to GS inverters, the GS could be used instead of the Victron etc.

 

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Good luck with the SMA Sunny. It will certainly do what it says on the tin but how many times the price of a PJ/upower of equal capability? (use a 10kW or 15kW PJ/Upower for comparison as this number of chinese watts would equate to the sustained 4.4kW rating of the Sunny).

I  can get  three  PJ 15kw  running 4000 watts as I do now  and probably last  10 years for the price of one SMA Sunny .   I like Paul idea .  

 

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17 hours ago, TheButcher said:

The best strategy would be to have a spare inverter or spare boards at hand already.

Words to live by....

I literally do.  I have several powerjacks and a few sets of spare parts.  That said, it's too bad how far powerjack's quality level has fallen in recent times.  Obviously, they were never top quality, but the price made up for it, and parts were always available. 

I have stated and still feel that I won't be buying any more powerjack inverters.  "They just don't make 'em like they used to"  These days you never know what you'll get in a powerjack/upower box.  As things currently stand, when I need to buy a new inverter, it will likely be a Genetry.  Higher priced than pj of course, but you are actually getting something more for those extra bucks spent.  A power rating you don't have to cut in half.  A transformer wound to be balanced between phases.  A control board redesigned to eliminate many of powerjack's shortcomings.  Last and probably more important than the rest;  after sale support from Sid via this forum.


When the world we are used to falls apart, we will probably all be on our own.  (I had a whole paragraph written here that I just deleted because it was too "Doom and Gloom")Happy New Year!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well I got the beast, I just have to unbox it.

This thing is so damn complex, the instruction manual is very hard to understand; translated in to English, badly. Constant repetition about 3 phase and  linking inverters. 

The bad part is the inverter doesn't use lifepo4 batteries, so I will have to use an external charger and mppt controller. But how do I turn the inverters charger off? No one's letting on. SMA do not reply, once they just sent a link to the manual that I have already quoted from. 

This might prove to be a expensive mistake. 

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2 hours ago, Bear said:

This thing is so damn complex, the instruction manual is very hard to understand; translated in to English, badly. Constant repetition about 3 phase and  linking inverters. 

Just when we might've thought we were actually getting away from Chinese-produced stuff, a "well known brand name" ends up being simply rebadged Chinese stuff....

'Fraid I'm not any help, I'm not aware that I've even set eyes on an SMA inverter--and if I did, I didn't know what it was.

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I had the idea that it was translated in to English from German from Chinese. Really it has that feel.

Yes we have Google uk, I think I'll use their translator on this manual 🙂   

 

4.4kw-sunny-island.jpg.503d19e3e274facc2935c0632045a3c3.jpg   

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Ah well, at least the outer casing looks pretty compared to the average chinese inverter :)

Hopefully the design and components will still be to the same european spec that they were before, and simply produced in China. So in theory it should still be 'better' than the average chinese designed+built inverter. But not a lot of use if the manual is in ChinGerEng, it doesn't support LiFePO4 batteries like you expected (was this mentioned in the spec before you bought it?) and they ignore technical support emails!

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It's all out of the box now, and all of the instruction manuals are in German LOL! Not a word in English.

I downloaded the pdf manual before buying it, and I knew it didn't immediately support lifepo4.

There are software updates but not of any use.

They ignore almost all emails.

Here's some pics of the beast.

   CIRCUIT-BOARD.JPG.958e6baaeb90289ec87ea4700a915841.JPG

COIL1.JPG.694d02b75982d624c70809691cb8775c.JPG

COIL-TAG.JPG.7ab1558ebb7843645a58a64004be2865.JPG

COIL-TAG2.JPG.fe6a347a1a90d32eab36b0194b00c2a4.JPG

RELAYS.JPG.10ee525551b65a97acf92ad2add0811a.JPG

AC.JPG.3437a96f8341ae9afd324598e7ddbdae.JPG

Sorry if I'm hijacking your forum a bit here 🙂

 

 

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Looks like a very nicely built unit. I'm suprised at the transformer rating though - only 1650VA (1.65kW max depending on the power factor of the load). I guess thats the continuous rating. But I vaguely remember you saying it could do 4.4kW for 20mins. That seems optimistic for a 1650VA rated transformer, unless I'm getting confused with another thread. How does the size/weight of the transformer compare to the PJ/Upower you had before?

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1 hour ago, Bear said:

I downloaded the pdf manual before buying it, and I knew it didn't immediately support lifepo4.

I don't understand what's so difficult about LiFePo4.  Basically, you just need to be able to disable temperature compensation, and specify custom float/bulk voltages.  That's really about it.

 

Also, interestingly, the nameplate on the tranny shows a 26v primary rating.  I find that quite interesting, assuming this is a 48v inverter.  Quite low, I would think.

 

Very interesting to see their FET drive board--but also considering this appears to be a <2kw inverter, I suppose 4 FETs/block is enough.  (2kw / 48v = a paltry 42A.)  Lots of very tiny caps, with SMT FETs.  Heatsink is that itty bitty aluminum block mounted to the bottom of the PCB...

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1 hour ago, Paul said:

I'm suprised at the transformer rating though - only 1650VA 1.65kW max

1650 x 2 =3300 hummm.

 

If I had know it was only a 3.3 I wouldn't have bought it. 

There was a second hand 8kw version that sold on ebay.uk for less than I bought this for. Damn. 

 

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Very interesting glancing down the specsheet...you can supposedly run 30 minutes at 4,400W (the model number is a 30-minute rating, haha!)...but adding ONLY 200W reduces the max time from 30 minutes to a miniscule 5 minutes.  All over 200W??  It's a similar falloff curve by adding another 900W to 3 seconds max.

 

I notice the Li-Ion entry is with an asterisk.  There isn't a significant difference between 14S Li-Ion and 16S LiFePo4 from a charger perspective (apart from possibly voltage), so you might be able to use that setting.

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1 hour ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

Also, interestingly, the nameplate on the tranny shows a 26v primary rating.  I find that quite interesting, assuming this is a 48v inverter.  Quite low, I would think.

 

It'd explain the short times for overrating use.  Lots of headroom in terms of voltage to wind out the PWM let it hold up the output under high load but the windings in the transformer no doubt wouldn't be happy sustaining the current for too long.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 12/29/2021 at 5:39 PM, TheButcher said:

If the white goods are all modern types that use motors run via electronics rather than mains direct you may well find you can run them successfully off a decent high frequency inverter, Bear.  If you like, post the make and model of each and I will try a google search about them.

Well here's a funny thing; it turns out that my Samil Solar River grid tie inverter that I have used for 3 or 4 years, is high frequency. 

I don't think there was any damage to the inverter or white goods, but how would I know?

Thank you for your offer of help, I'll take you up on that. 🙂

Washing machine: Hoover Dynamic Next 7kg 1600rpm

Dish washer: Bush BFSNB12W

Tumble dryer: Indesit is41v

 

If I can use high frequency I would be over the moon.

SMA are really is doing my head in. I was given a link by sma to register for an account, so I can use their help forums etc. After giving a load of information about my self, they say the website is no longer in use.   

I have no idea about the software, where to get it, or if it's a internet server run software (no net , no software use).  If I got the software could I turn the battery charger off, or "user charger option" I really don't think it's possible.

So now I'm pinning my hopes on a high frequency all singing all dancing inverter, grid tie / off grid / lifepo4 mix anyway we want.  I was thinking Epever, I know back to China. 🙂 

 

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Washing machine: Hoover Dynamic Next 7kg 1600rpm - will need the model number should be on the label.

Dish washer: Bush BFSNB12W - couldn't turn up the service manual for this machine.  I my limited experience with dish washers the only motor to think about is the drain pump and a '2000w' HF inverter shouldn't have any trouble with the sort of ratings the pump motors usually have.

Tumble dryer: Indesit is41v - 2200W total power draw, has a standard AC motor to drive the drum but can't find the specs for the motor apart from it being made in Romania.

First up, wow, what happened to the whitegoods industry?  It hasn't been particularly good for a couple of decades, IMO, but now it's turned to crap by the looks of it.  Parts aren't labelled beyond the obvious anymore.

Odds on the dish washer and tumble dryer won't cause a HF inverter any problems.

Pay attention to the total load you place on the HF inverter at any one time.  In a lot of cases the rating is often a brick wall figure that you can not exceed for practical purposes.  If you do the inverter will shutdown in a short time or collapse the output voltage to preserve itself.  Better HF inverters will have an overrate period where they will do more power out than the normal rating (and for more than the BS 20 or 40ms that you see with the pointless double wattage figures quoted on most Chinese HF inverters).  Check the manual for the inverter you are considering purchasing.

Take the tumble dryer for an example, total running rating is 2200W.  You may find the heater element is 1500 to 1800W.  Throw in the drum motor start current (the current the motor draws when stalled) and you are probably looking at around 3000W when you close the door to start the machine, so the inverter would need to be rated to supply, IMO, 4000W for a few minutes, and that's just the dryer by itself.  Running more than just the dryer concurrently?  You're going to need a higher rated inverter.

It's not just HF inverters that this all has to be consider for either.  LF inverters have their limits too.  If you have multiple concurrent loads and want to try to start a heavy draw motor that draw could be enough to push the inverter over its limits.  The key point is quality of the inverter.  Cheapie Chinese (being fair it is mostly Chinese origin stuff that is the problem) LF inverters will tap out long before a decent design and Genetry definitely falls into the later category along with well known brands such as Victron.

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