New Battery Balancer launched: Not all batteries are created equal

Not all batteries are created equal. When using a series string or series/parallel bank to create differing voltages and Ah ratings from individual 12 Volt batteries, we can end up with a variance in terminal voltages on each battery, which causes the batteries to become unbalanced.

This situation is often made even worse by the seemingly ever increasing demands on batteries, to run power hungry equipment.

The consequence of  all this is that an expensive string or bank can fail prematurely, which is costly in both time and money.

Continue reading

Self-consumption Hub-2 v3 Assistant – a major update

Important update to this blog post: 15th August 2014

Issues discovered with this release

We have underestimated the differing number of combinations and interactions with the Assistant release for the Self-consumption Hub-2 v3, as originally detailed below. It has been released too soon, which has caused several issues and I wish to personally apologize for that. A number of the problems are already fixed. Further fixes are being implemented and a lot of testing is being done as we speak.

What we will do now

The Assistant has been updated just now (late Friday), and it is now clearly marked as a Beta release. Please use this beta to improve systems that have already been configured with the hub-2 v3 Assistant. I recommend to wait a bit if using it on new installations, as it is quite certain that you will need to update anyhow in the coming weeks.
We will inform you here, just as soon as we can, when all issues are solved.

Continue reading

Which solar charge controller: PWM or MPPT?

Which solar charge controller: PWM or MPPT?

What follows is a summary of our white paper with the same title.

For the full white paper, see: Which solar charge controller: PWM or MPPT? in the White papers section of our site.

1. What they do

The PWM controller is in essence a switch that connects a solar array to a battery. The result is that the voltage of the array will be pulled down to near that of the battery.

The MPPT controller is more sophisticated (and more expensive): it will adjust its input voltage to harvest the maximum power from the solar array and then transform this power to supply the varying voltage requirement, of the battery plus load. Thus, it essentially decouples the array and battery voltages so that there can be, for example, a 12 volt battery on one side of the MPPT charge controller and a large number of cells wired in series to produce 36 volts on the other.

Continue reading

VictronEnergy stocklist app: Updated to the new P&A App

The price & availability (P&A) of products has until now, been available in the VictronEnergy app seen in the mobile phone screenshot above. This app included a full stocklist with pricing, plus a handy cable sizing and charger/inverter temperature derating tool.

This has now been superseded and updated with the new Victron P&A app. This separates out the price, availability and stock holding of products from the handy tools mentioned, which will come in a separate app in due course. For now though you can continue to use the tools in the old app, as the new P&A app will sit alongside the old VictronEnergy app, quite happily, as you can see.Continue reading