MX60

Discussion about OutBack Inverters in Marine Applications

Moderators: OutBack, OutBack Moderator Team

MX60

Postby Johnob on Sun Dec 19, 2004 9:09 pm

I am about to purchase a new Outback Inverter to replace my ancient Trace inverter that has problems.

During my research on the details of my order I noticed that the MX60 has been highly praised by users with more technical experience than me.

Currently I have three solar panels fitted directly to the 12 volt battery system through isolating(blocking) diodes each solar panel charging at 12/14 volts in parrallel.

I have seen from the Outback data that one circuit recommended uses three panels in serries charging through the Mx60 into a 12 volt system.

Which is the better one ?

No MX60 and all solar panels in parallel or using the MX60 with the three solar panels in serries charging a 12 volt system?
Last edited by Johnob on Mon Dec 20, 2004 7:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Sailing Vessel CRIB
Johnob
Member
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 8:54 pm
Location: Hong Kong

Re: MX60

Postby Brock on Mon Dec 20, 2004 12:44 pm

My guess is you will get more power to the batteries with the panels wired in series, because you will get less loss from the panels to the MX-60, but even if left in parallel and setup for 12 in 12 out you will still see a good increase in output. I would try it both ways and see how it compares on a nice sunny day.
Brock
OutBack Guru
 
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2002 11:01 pm
Location: Green Bay, WI

Postby crewzer on Mon Dec 20, 2004 5:40 pm

The MX-60 is a great charge controller, and I own one. However, I'm not sure it's the best economic choice for "small" power installations, especially in warm weather (i.e., marine) environments where the opportunities for MPPT gains may be limited.

It also might be worth checking with OutBack w/r/t how well the MX-60 holds up in a marine (salt water) environment.

The Morningstar PS-30M may be a more cost effective choice in this case. It's a very good charge controller, it's fairly inexpensive, and its circuit board's conformal coating will help protect it in a harsh environment.

I own of of these controllers as well, and I intend to one day "recycle" it in a low-power application (i.e., <500 W) such as an RV or a work shop.

HTH,
Jim / crewzer
User avatar
crewzer
OutBack Emperor
 
Posts: 1927
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 10:50 am
Location: Vienna, VA

Postby Johnob on Mon Dec 20, 2004 6:00 pm

Thank you both for your helpful advise, I'll look into the Morningstar PS-30M as well.

However, neither of you have mentioned the "Isolating/blocking diodes", will these cause problems with the MX60 or any other charging controller. I have 5 banks of battieries that are currently isolated during chargin g with isolating/blocking diodes.

I know that such diodes can prvent charging circuits from "sensing" the state of charge of batteries, BUT........ I don't know how to both allow "sensing" and keep each bank isolated.

I keep my banks isolated for a number of reasons, and so far this practice has proved to be useful.

Your comments please
Sailing Vessel CRIB
Johnob
Member
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 8:54 pm
Location: Hong Kong

Postby Kent Osterberg on Mon Dec 20, 2004 8:48 pm

Johnob,

The MX60 shouldn't have any trouble with the isolation diodes; you'll need to increase the absorbtion set point by 0.7 volts to allow for the voltage drop across the diodes. The Prostar doesn't have adjustable set points so the diodes may be a problem for it. The Morningstar Tristar may be suitable if you are looking for a non-MPPT controller.

Isolation diodes do prevent a bad battery from discharging the good batteries, but a bad battery will prevent the good ones from being charged if a common charger or charge controller is being used. If you want to avoid that possibility, you'll need a charge controller for each battery bank.
Kent Osterberg
OutBack Emperor
 
Posts: 1501
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 11:01 pm
Location: Cove, Oregon
My RE system: SMA Sunny Boy 2500 with eight Mobil Solar Ra 180 modules

Postby Johnob on Mon Dec 20, 2004 9:10 pm

Kent,

Thank you for the reasuring news.

As to my charging controls, these I do with a manual control of the alternator field coil. Additionally, each bank of batteries is monitered with an independent amp and volt meter, so that any discrepancy is seen immediatley.

Thank you again.
Sailing Vessel CRIB
Johnob
Member
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 8:54 pm
Location: Hong Kong

Postby crewzer on Tue Dec 21, 2004 4:39 pm

Both the TriStar and the ProStar controllers feature battery sense lines, which are normally used to accurately measure battery voltage at the battery terminals. This feature may allow you to insert isolation/blocking diodes in the battery charge wiring yet still apply the correct charging voltage to the battery(ies) -- assuming sufficient PV voltage, of course.

More info is available from Morningstar's FAQ page, and you may wish to contact Morningstar directly for additional guidance. See: http://www.morningstarcorp.com/products/FAQ/

HTH,
Jim / crewzer
User avatar
crewzer
OutBack Emperor
 
Posts: 1927
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 10:50 am
Location: Vienna, VA

Postby Johnob on Tue Dec 21, 2004 5:01 pm

Crewzer,

I have looked at the address you recomend, and I must thank you VERY much. THis information is just what I've been looking for. Thank you again.

regards
Sailing Vessel CRIB
Johnob
Member
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2004 8:54 pm
Location: Hong Kong

Re: MX60

Postby StarDreamers.us on Fri Aug 14, 2009 7:11 pm

Read the discussion with interest. However, I do have a few questions that are related.

I have three 200 w Sharp 24v panels connected in series to my MX60. Charging my 12 v battery bank of 8 AGM yellow tops. What should I expect should to be the volts coming off the roof? I get about 71+-. I charge my batteries to 13.4 v and am wondering if I am charging them high enough?? Today according to my MATE summary I gathered 1.5 KWH of charge. Any ideas, questions? I may not be asking the right questions and I am open to your suggestions. My system is on an RV and we travel to different parts of the country. Thanks!
StarDreamers.us
Member
 
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2007 7:04 am
Location: This wonderful country the USA!

Re: MX60

Postby tallgirl on Fri Aug 14, 2009 8:44 pm

The voltage coming in is irrelevant with a MPPT charge controller. What matters is the watts.

13.4V is no where close to high enough. You want something in the mid to high 14's, depending on battery technology.

You don't say if you were moving or whatever with your panels, so knowing you produced 1.5KWh off of 600 watts of panels is missing some information.

Just a bit of advice -- start a new topic. This one is 5 years old.
Julie in Texas

greenMonitor(tm) for OutBack Power Technologies systems from greenHouse Gas and Electric. Learn more now!
User avatar
tallgirl
OutBack Emperor
 
Posts: 4329
Joined: Wed Sep 26, 2007 9:59 am
Location: Austin, TX
My RE system: 16 Kyocera KC175GT (2,800 watts DC), MX-60, 2 OutBack GVFX3648, 24 GC2 batteries (6v @ 215AH), 14 Pantheon-based ACPV modules (3,200 watts DC), La Crosse Technologies WS2310 Weather Station, greenLogger Sensors environmental monitor, WattNode watt-hour meter, greenLogger Lite data logger.


Return to Marine Applications

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest