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Solar Panel Regulator

Sam Said:

I want to make a 12 Volt Solar Battery Regulator. Any help? Any circuit diagrams?

We Answered:

Here is a site with lots of them.

http://www.discovercircuits.com/S/solar-…

I built an automatic solar array tilting device so my array would follow the sun. Was fun for a while but used more power then it was worth. Same thing for make your own controllers and inverters. It is always fun to build some things but others I found it is just better and faster to just buy one for about 40 bucks or so...

http://store.oynot.com/morningstar.html

Kay Said:

Can an automobile voltage regulator be used in a 12v solar generator system?

We Answered:

Probably not.

As the first link below shows, a car voltage regulator senses the voltage and tells the alternator to put out more or less voltage.

This is not the way a solar voltage regulator works.

The second link shows how a solid state voltage regulator works. It cuts down a voltage and stabilizes the voltage (eliminating ripples). This is the kind of voltage regulator you would need for a solar generating system.

Dustin Said:

How can I adapt an automotive reglator to a solar panel?

We Answered:

solar panels will naturally produce a certain DC voltage which is what your battery needs - the current will vary based on the sun light.

You need probably 14V to have some over voltage. So based on your specs look at having at least 14 V but not too much over that (tells you how many panels you need in series)

I would have blocking diodes (probably the solar cell has them built in) to insure the battery does not discharge thru the panel.

Kathleen Said:

solar panel regulator?

We Answered:

wire them in series parallel to get 18 volts at 200 mA, and that should charge a 12 volt battery. You may want to put in a series diode to prevent the battery from discharging into the panel when the sun is out. At 200 mA, depending on the battery size, you may not need much control, as that low a current will not overcharge a large battery, like a small auto battery. In fact it will take a very long time to charge it.


edit:
"But do i need to add a regulator?"

If by that you mean a voltage regulator, no, as a solar panel has a high output resistance, and that will limit the current into the battery.

If you mean a charge controller, if the battery is small, you may need a charge contoller to avoid overcharging the battery. But that is not a voltage regulator.

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