Thursday, September 12, 2013

Electricity 101 and solar power

 As some of you have probably figured out by now, I am extremely interested in setting up a solar power system to run my radio gear during extended power outages and extreme weather conditions. One concern that I have found is the charge time that it takes for a lot of the portable solar power generator kits that are on the market. Although most are more than adequate to run a 100 watt radio, a laptop computer and some lights the recharge time has been a big concern with most of the portable solar power generators taking almost a full day to recharge once they are depleted.
 I have been looking at different options including motorhome solar panel kits and portable solar generators, all of which have their good and bad points.
 A motorhome solar panel kit can be fairly small and simple, but you have to lug a lot of equipment around with you on the go, and the panels can be fragile. Their is also the setup time.
 A solar power generator on the other hand is completely self contained with no setup other than opening up the solar panels and plugging in. The bad part about those are the charge capacity and bulky box. These are easier to lug around if you are on the move, and a lot better to store. If you are not very tech savvy then this may be the best option for you. They are also a little more expensive.
 Whichever type of system you use be sure to choose one that contains or includes a Pure Sine Wave inverter. This will allow your delicate electrical devices to run better.

 I ran across this web page over at CB radio that gives an excellent explanation of what Electricity is and what a solar panel is so I thought I would share it. Even though this isn't ham radio related it is a concern for anyone that may be interested in keeping communications open during a power outage, or for someone that is wanting to stay informed of current conditions during extreme weather.

Electricity 101