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Solar panel positioning


blackrose
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I have a very curved widebeam roof. If I were installing two rigid solar panels which were fixed to the roof and weren't going to be tilted, assuming they are the same dimensions would it be better to install them in the black positions where one panel is tilted towards the sun and one away from it, or green positions where they are both flat? Or would it make no significant difference? Batteries are at the stern so cabling might be easier/shorter runs with he black positions.

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Edited by blackrose
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Your mooring runs SE-NW so one side in the black position is not worth fitting as it will produce the square root of bugger all.

This side will obviously vary depending on which way your boat is facing. For that reason alone I would say green position.

However if you are prepared to move panels about...............

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Posted (edited)

I'm thinking long term and use of the panels while away from the mooring. With the black panel positions one panel will always be doing nothing wherever the boat is moored and the other one will be doing well, but I'm not sure if the panel angled towards the sun does better then two flat panels?

Edited by blackrose
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plus the fact in the black position there could  always be a rope draped across the panel and where is it easier to walk on the roof?

Edited by Loddon
Speeling
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Just now, TheBiscuits said:

I'd go green too.

 

Don't you walk on your boat roof when singlehanding?  Black would make it more awkward.

 

 

Yes, I do use the roof but with the black positions I could walk down the centre

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Actually I'd just tile the forward half of the boat with a much larger solar array and leave the aft half for piling stuff on or walking on.

 

Stick 2 or 3kW on and enjoy the "free" electricity ...

Edited by TheBiscuits
spellink
  • Greenie 1
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2 minutes ago, blackrose said:

 

Yes, I do use the roof but with the black positions I could walk down the centre

 

It may just be the photo but it looks like you'd have to jump over the panels and/or the slide hatch with the black positions.  Of course you could always move them a bit more forward.

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In fact I'm thinking of 4 x 800mm wide x 1580mm long panels but just showed 2 in my drawing as it was easier to explain. 4 panels down the centre would extend the full length of the roof so cabling is a pain but if that's better then I might do that. 

 

 

1 minute ago, TheBiscuits said:

 

It may just be the photo but it looks like you'd have to jump over the panels and/or the slide hatch with the black positions.  Of course you could always move them a bit more forward.

 

Yes, they would be far enough forward so I wouldn't have to jump over them.

3 minutes ago, Loddon said:

Personally I would put 3 panels side by side down at  the front leaving the whole of the back as a working area.

 

I've already moved my pole and plank rack down to the front as it's seldom used and was getting in the way and catching on one of the centre ropes. 

 

If I put 3 panels side by side wouldn't one always be doing nothing in terms of generating?

  • Greenie 1
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Mine are in the green zone, wired in series. Deffo don't go black unless your panels are in parallel. Your boat's a widebeam though, isn't it? Obviously much flexibility with panel size and orientation, plus more real estate play with to ensure the ease of passing over the roof. I'd still go flat rather than tilting if you cruise - kind of a decent general average versus a good peak when adjusted right. Obviously if you don't move and you tilt south that's gonna be better.

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Posted (edited)
28 minutes ago, Rob-M said:

Personally I would go flat in the middle if you don't want to be fiddling around tilting the panels so your green zones.

 

Ok, but there would be no fiddling around tilting panels. They would just sit on standard fixed fittings on the curved roof. 

9 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

Mine are in the green zone, wired in series. Deffo don't go black unless your panels are in parallel. 

 

So what difference does physical panel positioning make when it comes to connecting in series or parallel? This is obviously something I hadn't considered. 

Edited by blackrose
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If panels are wired in series and one panel is in the shade* there is no output

If panels are wired in parallel and one panel is in the shade* you will get 50% output.

 

 

* or not facing the sun

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