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Offline Deerslayer

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Field Charging Station
« on: August 13, 2018, 12:40:57 PM »
Wouldn't it be nice to have charging station at our field?

Well, here is a nifty setup that the Cornwall club has. It was created by a former member (recently deceased). Pictures are attached.

The solar panel is mounted on the roof of the clubhouse. The charging station holds one or more large lead acid batteries. Like some other organizations or individuals have done, they acquired these from Bell as that company replaced them with Li-Ion technology. So, they are really heavy duty batteries. The appropriate electronics then feed 12 volts to a rather innovative arrangement up top. Two bare wires run behind the vertical backboard, one is positive, the other is ground. The drilled holes allow you to simply clip onto the pair at any available opening. Note the ceramic floor tiles in place as a fire protection.

This is a very nice setup. They operate year round and have not had any need to supply generator power to supplant the solar plus battery combination.

Something for us to consider?
« Last Edit: August 13, 2018, 04:57:29 PM by Deerslayer »
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Offline Wilf

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Re: Field Charging Station
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2018, 02:59:51 PM »
I like their approach with will definitely handle a few chargers at once. I would like to see a more universal and maybe a little less accident prone method. I would use two or more 100 watt solar panels feeding through a charge controller to a couple heavy duty batteriess such as deep cycle marine batteries.  Connect these batteries in parallel to feed a 1000 watt inverter.  Connect this to the whole club house AC system through a voltage source selector switch (generator/hydro switch). This way we could use the solar system for normal flying or switch to the generator input for all our large events which require more power to run things such as coffe makers etc.


Just an opinion...

Offline Deerslayer

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Re: Field Charging Station
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2018, 05:07:27 AM »
I get what you are saying.

The 12 volt idea is simple and efficient (if the main goal is to provide power suitable for LiPo charging), as there is no up and down conversion to/from different voltages and ac/dc involved. Right now, folks are either carrying lead acid batteries around, charging under the hood (remember why it is called a "firewall"?), inside the car (remember Dave's van fire?) or lugging generators to the field. We could still have basically the current setup whereby the weather station is powered by the big battery, topped up by the solar cell and by generator whenever one is
available, with some simple changes:
1. Add additional solar cells to boost up capacity, as you suggest
2. Add the simple "plug board" to access 12 vdc for chargers. We could even set up a small panel with, say, Power Pole connectors and/or other commonly used ones.

This would be simple, cheap, easy and quick to do, wouldn't it?
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Offline Flight Kid

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Re: Field Charging Station
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2018, 04:36:58 PM »
yes