Absorb setting is being bypassed

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JRHill
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-Well: Grundfos 11-SQF-2 pump, controller & AC switch (CU200, IO101), Tristar 45 Controller, 780w SunTech 195, Trojan golf cart batteries.
-All running since July '11 with various upgrades and workarounds.
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Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Wed Mar 13, 2019 9:52 am

I'm finally getting some sunlight. Great. The inverter is set at 2 hrs of absorb, the CC at 5 hrs. But for everything I try, I can't get to the CC for the duration of absorb even though the sunlight is there. Dang, all the settings are there - been there done that. FNDC Charge Termination is "N" or off, everything seems to be in order but I have to manually keep Bulking from the Charger key to get enough into the batteries to keep the genset from firing up the next morning. Doing so is cool, pushing the absorb keeps the SOC/Voltage good enough to get through the morning.

What the heck happened? I added the AGS last fall. The AGS works great but what happened?

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:03 am

What mode is the CC in when Absorb is expected? Is there truly enough PV harvest to support inverter loads and absorb simultaneously? How long is the CC in Absorb before it drops out? Is it a consistent duration? What's the relative State of Charge when Absorb drops out?

JRHill
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-Well: Grundfos 11-SQF-2 pump, controller & AC switch (CU200, IO101), Tristar 45 Controller, 780w SunTech 195, Trojan golf cart batteries.
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:43 am

What mode is the CC in when Absorb is expected? The CC is in Bulk and transitions to Absorb as expected at the set points.

Is there truly enough PV harvest to support inverter loads and absorb simultaneously? Yup, with enough to spare.

How long is the CC in Absorb before it drops out? From recent experience, 2 to 2:15 hours. I have ruined the logs by forcing a new Bulks via the Charger key but I have to get the batteries charged. When I force the Bulk (later in the cycle when floating), it quickly goes to absorb for an unpredictable time and then to Float again. But I can add to the absorb time doing so. But dang, there are other things to do than watch the Mate3 and pushing buttons.

Is it a consistent duration? It happens every day, similarly.

What's the relative State of Charge when Absorb drops out? I haven't done SGs for a few weeks but within the last month I topped off the batteries for several days in a row (via SG) and reset the FNDC - it was way off. Right now the batteries are close enough to FNDC that I can trust the reading in the morning and evening.

The gal from Australia, a few posts back in an absorb issue, said, paraphrased, "Disconnect the FNDC." I'm not only thinking of that but just plain doing factory resets on everything and starting from scratch. There have been several weird things happening and all I did this year was add the AGS programming for Voltage Start. But things have been happening out of the norm and the wife is getting pissed. She is supposed to be able to run this if I'm gone. I've been battling this for 9 years. She's a friggin' scientist. She has the ability and has leaned on me to make it intuitive to some degree. But It seems I keep getting deeper into exceptions and special instructions and away from intuition.

Otoh.
Last edited by JRHill on Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:52 am

Probably apropos of nothing, but I wonder what would happen if the Absorb time on the Charge Controller and Inverter charger were both set to 5 hours?

JRHill
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:03 pm

raysun wrote:Probably apropos of nothing, but I wonder what would happen if the Absorb time on the Charge Controller and Inverter charger were both set to 5 hours?
Gosh this sounds familiar. A few weeks ago, all of a sudden, my genset wouldn't warm up via the AGS setting. Kurt asked me to go to the Inverter programming and change the Connect Delay. All of a sudden my AGS began obeying the warmup delay.

Raysun, I'm almost afraid of the results. What if it worked?

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:08 pm

LOL! You can probably shut down the gen set from running too long during Absorb easier than punching the Bulk Start button multiple times.

JRHill
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:07 pm

raysun wrote:LOL! You can probably shut down the gen set from running too long during Absorb easier than punching the Bulk Start button multiple times.
Sounds cute but none of the experiments are working. Seriously, I set the FX battery charger to the same as the CC. Nope, still 2 hrs of Absorb.

Seriously, I'm about to pull the plugs/connections on everything and restart everything to factory settings. I know I still have the old Mate3 firmware from back when things worked, if needed. Of course, if I do that then I may have trouble with OpticsRE but at this point I could care less.

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:11 pm

There's got to be another bit flipped somewhere. Is it possible Absorb End Amps is set and is being used?

JRHill
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-Well: Grundfos 11-SQF-2 pump, controller & AC switch (CU200, IO101), Tristar 45 Controller, 780w SunTech 195, Trojan golf cart batteries.
-All running since July '11 with various upgrades and workarounds.
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:11 pm

raysun wrote:There's got to be another bit flipped somewhere. Is it possible Absorb End Amps is set and is being used?
End absorb is set at 8 as it has been for years. I haven't changed it. But if it was doing something, shouldn't I see ~450watts feeding the batteries as a minimum after the absorb wound down? I haven't paid much attention to the setting.

The matrix of changes is getting deeper. And It's gotten to the point where sorting is confusing. I can't find a link.

I couldn't agree more with you. All was well and then things changed.

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by SandyP » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:22 pm

JRHill wrote:End absorb is set at 8 as it has been for years. I haven't changed it.
I would remove the Absorb end amps (set it to zero) just as a test and see if you get more than your current ~2hrs absorb.

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:48 pm

My next project is to replace a Mate 3 with a M.3s. I do believe when I do, it will be via manual configuration of each relevant setting - looking at the M.3 menu by menu and transcribing to the M.3s. It will be interesting to see what happens when I bring the M.3s up.

My system is as simple as they get, so I'm hoping the whole update is anticlimactic, however, I, like you, am more than prepared to hit the factory reset on the whole thing. In all my years of IT Ops., I followed Ripley's Dictum to repeated successful system behavior: https://youtu.be/aCbfMkh940Q

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:29 pm

In a most curious development - checking my FM80 log, I see most absorb times in a brief sample were 2:15 of the 3 programmed hours.

Most curious. I'll have to check deeper into it next week.

JRHill
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Thu Mar 14, 2019 9:44 am

It IS a most curious development. A few messages back Sandy chimed in to check the end amps. While a valid point I almost dismissed checking 'cause I KNOW its set at zero. So I checked and it and the setting was 8 amps. WTF?!? Several years back when I added the FNDC and upgraded to the Mate3 I fought to get the settings dialed into place. I could not get a full absorb. I KNOW that the end amps may be a problem and have always kept the setting at zero. It was back then that I also learned about the charge termination feature of the FNDC and that was my problem then.

So how did the end amps change to 8 from zero?

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Thu Mar 14, 2019 11:07 am

We live in Hawaii, so attribute all this kine mischief to the Menehune.

JRHill
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Thu Mar 14, 2019 11:55 am

I'm the only one who makes key presses here, mostly. I have put much time into chatting with the wife to take certain actions when necessary and to keep it KISS. The wife, now retired, was the project manager for a facility that had the physical-plant-from-hell yet she will barely touch anything to do with our solar. Certainly she does not even know what 141 means.

I have thought of a spiral pad to note every key press and change but it really seems anal as everything is under control, or at least it used to be under control. If a test, its usually a sticky note with the old and new setting. So how does a setting change? And how does changing the AC connect delay fix the warm-up cycle for the AGS? (and no, I haven't reversed it to "see" what would happen).

And going through the event history? "OutBack Set Time Zone" entries are so frequent as to make it like finding the needle in the haystack. The Mate3 event log is as painful but in a different way.

Seriously, its got me thinking of the WattPlot Pro stuff again. Granted the project is not progressing anymore but as it was at the time, it worked great as long as my internal network was stabilized. Over the last few months after a knee replacement I put in a bunch of troubleshooting time. I'm feeling rather spry now and the weather is inviting me outside++. I am about out of patience for the x number of times....

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by bluspark » Thu Mar 14, 2019 10:09 pm

I'm following this one,
I'm having troubles with the settings, as well :???:

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Thu Mar 14, 2019 11:58 pm

Hang in there JR. At least we can be thankful we're not debugging to control software on the latest 737s.

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by sodamo » Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:54 am

JR
I feel your pain. Went thru a very similar situation last year. One or two of my four FM80s would report Charged at very early hours in morning when it just wasnÔÇÖt possible and never showed Absorb. I never did figure out which setting(s) caused it. I even played with the voltage calibration but the only result was it change which CC reported Charged. Finally in desparation I reset to factory and dialed in settings from a neighbor with same batteries. Not sure I have it totally fixed, but tolerable. I have the Aquion batteries and company went bankrupt month after I bought so no support from them.
I too have found setting changes that didnÔÇÖt make sense and absolutely no recollection of making them. I never had these problems with my older MX60s.

My wife is like yours, would begin to touch system just wants it to work.

I have posted request previously and would like to repost: would really like to have a detailed definition of each and all of the configurable settings, impact of the parameters, and possible interactions with others. Seems there should at least be a basic source we can readily access, possibly on OpticsRE site as minimum.
David
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by Mike Curran » Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:52 am

I don't think there's a perfect solution for this. Outback incorporated a (potentially) shared battery sensing circuit in its FM100 product. They say one of its advantages is "Conflict between controllers due to differing readings is eliminated." So even OB acknowledges that it's a problem for systems with multiple, older charge controllers.
Screenshot_20190315-104722.jpg
http://www.tigoenergy.com/site.php?95b2dca2-ca6c
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:52 am

raysun wrote:Hang in there JR. At least we can be thankful we're not debugging to control software on the latest 737s.
After changing back the end amps all is as it should've been. BTW, yesterday was the 1st of the season for a full 5 hrs absorb and the generator hasn't started for four days! Whoo-hoo!

raysun
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:08 am

My Absorb End Amps setting has not changed - 0A. Return Amps = 7. However, I did notice Global Charge Termination was enabled. I disabled it and will see if that has an effect on my system.

JRHill
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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Sat Mar 16, 2019 12:35 pm

raysun wrote:My Absorb End Amps setting has not changed - 0A. Return Amps = 7. However, I did notice Global Charge Termination was enabled. I disabled it and will see if that has an effect on my system.
Global Charge Termination must go away if you want to actually control your system. If the FNDC had the sensors to dip into the electrolyte and give a real time SG, then SOC and so many other things would really be programmable (if the values didn't somehow change but, ahem...). I hate to say this but when I added the FNDC to the system I think I may have taken a move backward. I really like the shunts though because they tell me what the real ins-and outs-are despite the overhead.

A lot of folks use a lot more power than we do. Using little presents a whole bunch of questions cause you fall into the overhead of the system.

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by JRHill » Sat Mar 16, 2019 3:26 pm

sodamo wrote:I have posted request previously and would like to repost: would really like to have a detailed definition of each and all of the configurable settings, impact of the parameters, and possible interactions with others. Seems there should at least be a basic source we can readily access, possibly on OpticsRE site as minimum.
As an example one may spend part of the day on generator power, another on solar. The inverter and charge controller each have their charge settings for absorb, etc.. So as each may move from bulk to absorb at the times they were running at at the set voltages, how do they influence each other? They certainly don't share the timers. This has always been a confusion to me. Which one wins? What is the influence of one to the other?

Maybe if they told me they'd have to shoot me. :-0

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:12 am

It looks like my 3 hour Absorb timers are being overridden/ignored as well. Both CC and Inverter chargers run 2 1/4 - 2 1/2 hrs. maximum - often significantly shorter intervals.

A real conundrum.

I added about 45 minutes to the CC and Inv Absorb timers to see if that has an effect.

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Re: Absorb setting is being bypassed

Post by raysun » Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:26 am

I've always taken this passage as 'gospel' on how the Absorb phase is terminated, and how it is reported:

Charged Return Amps
This is the current that the batteries must decrease down to during the Absorb stage of the charging cycle. The decay of the current during the Absorb stage is completely dictated by the battery and/or system loads. The duration the Absorb stage, however, is controlled by the Absorb Timer value of the charging source. If the Charged Return Amps is set too low, the battery will take too long to reach the current and the Absorb stage will terminate before the Charged Return Amps can be reached and the charge parameters will not be met. If it is set too high, the Charged Return Amps will be met, but the batteries will be undercharged. This parameter does not control the Absorb stage. (Only the charging source can terminate the Absorb stage based on its Absorb Timer value.) A good starting point is to select 1 to 3% of the battery bankÔÇÖs 100-hour rate. This current will change throughout the batteryÔÇÖs and systemÔÇÖs life. Consult with the battery manufacturer for a specific recommendation.

True or not?

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