Example System: Solar Powered Garden Wagon

"As seen at the Texas State Fair..."

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Solar Powered Garden Wagon

A Special Project to build a Solar Display for the State Fair. Solar works, how do you show everyone? Make a portable display that can be moved around to show everyone at the fair what solar is all about.
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Every project has a budget. This project is no exception.

1. A Garden Cart was used because it is pre-built saving time and effort. And it can handle the weight.


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2. A frame was constructed to hold the panels and a fixed angle was used. The rack was welded together to mount the panels high enough to let people see them but not too low to prevent damage to the panels or people. The Panels were laid out to mount them to an Aluminum rail system developed just for this cart. The Array is lifted to the top of rack as one piece and mating holes and bolts receive the array without the need for tools. Stainless hardware was used to make it last. The PV combiner stays with the Panels and a flexible cable is used with an Anderson Style Connector to make the connection quick, easy and electrically safe.

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3. Mount the 1000W inverter. A Sine Wave inverter from Magnum Energy was installed since the system will power an LCD TV a couple hours each day. And maybe a blender every now and then. The Inverter also includes a nice battery charger, just in case the PV can't keep up with the 200-300W LCD TV libations.
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4. Add the batteries. These test batteries were place in the cart to provide ballast weight and testing power for the system. I also added a 200A Fuse on the Positive side of the cable going from the battery to the inverter. The wires were bigger than needed just in case the inverter size was changed out later (that was a consideration from the beginning since a load study was not completed ahead of time).
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5. I reinforced the bottom of the cart at the axle. not sure how this cart could hold the 1000 pound limit printed on the box. Maybe 1000 pounds is lighter in China.
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6. To finish up, I added a small charge controller to the PVs to prevent from over charging the battery when not in use. NO PICTURE
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Updated: July 02, 2010