AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

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AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby gregorio on Thu Jan 17, 2019 6:54 pm

I've inherited a Radian GS8048A AC coupled to a SolarEdge 6000E GTI via the ROCB in the GSLC-AC load center. At this time, there is no battery bank and the generator is disconnected (never fully connected). Basically, the Radian has never been powered and is in manual bypass mode. I would like to put it to use as it was intended (a partial home UPS) and I am seriously considering the Discover Energy AES 6.6kWh lithium battery. The max loads are very low (<1.5kW) and the specs of the battery and Radian match up fairly well in both recommended max charge and continuous current (for my needs)

My concern lies in the AC coupled SoalrEdge GTI. A recent document, "AC Coupling Grid Tie Inverters With OutBack Battery-Based Inverters" says;

"OutBack Power has successfully tested our AC coupling solution on SMA, Enphase and SolarEdge inverters. SolarEdge does not support blackout relay solutions, but has something called a Power Reduction Interface Port that can be used instead of a blackout relay to take the inverter offline."

My question is if Outback has successfully tested their AC coupled solution (ROCB/black out relay) with SolarEdge, how is it that SolarEdge does not support it? Can anyone shed some light on this statement? Further, the SolarEdge solution which my 2014 vintage GTI might not even have, does not support a generator. At least not one that is automatically controlled. How is everyone else doing this?
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My RE system: Current: Radian GS8048A/GSLC174-AC (in manual bypass mode)
SolarEdge SE6000 (AC Coupled).
Standalone SolarEdge SE7600.
SolarWorld 250W panels
In Progress: Generac 22kVA Generator
Coming Soon: Lithium Battery (leaning towards Discover Energy AES 6.6kWh)

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby gregorio on Tue Jan 29, 2019 6:48 pm

Looks like almost 100 views but no replies Maybe the questions I should be asking are;

Is A/C coupling rare?
Is it still a recommended solution?
Should I be looking at changing this to DC?
What kind of power loss can I expect without the SolarEdge optimizers?
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My RE system: Current: Radian GS8048A/GSLC174-AC (in manual bypass mode)
SolarEdge SE6000 (AC Coupled).
Standalone SolarEdge SE7600.
SolarWorld 250W panels
In Progress: Generac 22kVA Generator
Coming Soon: Lithium Battery (leaning towards Discover Energy AES 6.6kWh)

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby clarkef on Thu Mar 14, 2019 3:12 pm

Looks like Outback just updated their AC Coupling approach to stop using the ROCB and replace with frequency shifting. I was wondering why I couldn't buy the ROCB setup any more - now I know.

http://outbackpower.com/downloads/docum ... p_note.pdf
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Kurt Lundquist on Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:36 am

There is a webinar today on the new AC coupling solution. Link : http://www.outbackpower.com/resources/obt-training/webinars

Here is the application note too http://www.outbackpower.com/downloads/documents/appnotes/acc_freq_app_note.pdf

If you only lose power a few hours per year I wouldn't bother with AC coupling. If you do decide to AC couple I suggest you consider lead acid batteries instead. Even with the new frequency shift firmware, I doubt the inverter would be able to curtail PV charge quick enough to protect a lithium battery bank. Lead acid batteries are more forgiving and able to operate at a wider range of voltage. The wider voltage range allows for more granularity so it is easier to ramp back the grid-tied inverter before the battery is overcharged. A sealed AGM style battery would be a good choice.

If you really want the Lithium battery bank and want PV when the grid is down I suggest you consider DC coupling the PV via FM100 charge controller(s).

-Kurt
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby clarkef on Fri Mar 15, 2019 8:02 am

Kurt,

Presumably you can program the Radian with whatever charging values you want, so you can be conservative with your voltages and be able to use Li-Ion batteries. Yeah, you might not get that last 5 or 10% of charge when on generator, but at least you won’t be bumping up against max voltages for Lithium batteries. The charge controllers can have their own settings and “top off” with DC coupled. This ignores the new feature of Freq/Watt adjustment which can tell compliant inverter’s to reduce output, not just stop output.

Heck, I’m so conservative on my Li-Ion bank, I’m not using about 15% of their capacity - ending bulk at 48.8v when max is 50.2v. That’s a whole day of battery run time for me. Looks like the new software kicks in at .4 V above Radian charging set points based on the app note. That’s not very Li-Ion friendly setting, but I can work with it.
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Kurt Lundquist on Fri Mar 15, 2019 8:39 am

clarkf,

DC or AC coupled I agree with your conservative charging approach on the lithium cells. If the OP had 2000Ah of battery like you I wouldn't be as concerned with coupling a 6kW Grid-Tied Inverter (GTI). In this case, the battery capacity is about the same size as the GTI inverter output. Even if the battery had 50% headroom I would still be concerned the frequency shift might not ramp up fast enough to prevent damage to the battery.

-Kurt
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby clarkef on Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:06 am

Kurt Lundquist wrote:clarkf,

DC or AC coupled I agree with your conservative charging approach on the lithium cells. If the OP had 2000Ah of battery like you I wouldn't be as concerned with coupling a 6kW Grid-Tied Inverter (GTI). In this case, the battery capacity is about the same size as the GTI inverter output. Even if the battery had 50% headroom I would still be concerned the frequency shift might not ramp up fast enough to prevent damage to the battery.

-Kurt


Fair points - until we see this in operation best to be very conservative! I keep forgetting not everyone is as crazy as me with the size of my BB. I like the idea of the freq/watt shift and would like to see it in operation. Maybe I’ll pick up a freq/watt MI to play with to gain some exposure to the new AC coupling feature and programming.
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2KW of 9 60 cell poly panels (3s3p)
2000AH of Li-Ion modules @48v with BMS
Midnite Combiners, SPDs

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby gregorio on Sun Mar 17, 2019 1:55 pm

WOW 2000ah Lithium bank? What are you, a small city? :lol:

I listened to the webinar and found it very helpful. As far as I can tell, the reason the original installer went with AC coupling was due to panel shading concerns. He wanted to maximize power production in order to maximize the return on the investment. Given that the system is only going to provide backup to a limited number of loads in the event of an outage, I think the best way forward is for me to decouple the GTI from the Radian when adding the Lithium batteries. In the future, I may want to add more panels to my home and at that time, I can add a DC charge controller.

Now, does anyone have an opinion on this Discover battery? https://discoverbattery.com/product-sea ... 42-48-6650 I am considering it over the Simpliphi mostly because the Discover has 4 times the continuous duty rating at 130A vs 34A. I also saw how the Simpliphi is constructed compared to the Discovery. The latter is built like a tank.
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My RE system: Current: Radian GS8048A/GSLC174-AC (in manual bypass mode)
SolarEdge SE6000 (AC Coupled).
Standalone SolarEdge SE7600.
SolarWorld 250W panels
In Progress: Generac 22kVA Generator
Coming Soon: Lithium Battery (leaning towards Discover Energy AES 6.6kWh)

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby clarkef on Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:02 pm

gregorio wrote:WOW 2000ah Lithium bank? What are you, a small city? :lol:


One of my promises to my wife when we were preparing to move offgrid was for her to not have to worry about whether a light got left on, or if there was enough energy to turn off the coffee maker. So yeah, I might have gone a bit overboard with 90KW of stored energy. :-)
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FM100 CC x3
10KW of 72 cell panels (5S3P x2)
2KW of 9 60 cell poly panels (3s3p)
2000AH of Li-Ion modules @48v with BMS
Midnite Combiners, SPDs

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby raysun on Sun Mar 17, 2019 9:16 pm

clarkef wrote:So yeah, I might have gone a bit overboard with 90KW of stored energy. :-)


"Smoke 'em if you got 'em", I say.

A battery bank that size comes with it's own challenge: it will most likely outlive you, so its succession ownership and eventual disposal will need to be part of the estate planning. ;)


#gichpeopkesproblems
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Swampdog on Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:38 am

AC coupled
7.0 kw system
25 x Solarworld SW280
Outback GH Energycell (12 x 220)
Outback GS load center GSLC175-PV-120/240
Outback Radian 8048a
Outback MATE3s (03/2018)
Outback HUB
Outback FlexNet DC
SOLAREDGE SE6000A-US

Today I received a promotional email from OutBack touting AC Coupling. MY system is already AC coupled. My question is regarding firmware:
Firmware cited as required in today's promotional email:
MATE3s: 001.004.001
GS8048A: 001.006.070

Currently installed:
MATE3s: 1.3.1
(NOTE: I was instructed by tech support, amid issues, to backoad 1.3.1 from a problematic 1.4.1)
GS8048A: 1.6.63

Latest Firnware currently available via Outback web site:
MATE3s: online firmware now 001.004.001
Radian GS8048A: online firmware now 001.006.070 (I see that there is also a 1.6.65, I did not install)

Questions: Is it advisable to install the latest firmware on the web site now? Is MATE3s 1.4.1 now a re-release with previous problems corrected?
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Outback Radian 8048a
Outback MATE3s
Outback HUB
Outback FlexNet DC
SOLAREDGE SE6000A-US

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby gregorio on Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:59 pm

What are you using to dump excess production in the event of a grid outage?
gregorio
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My RE system: Current: Radian GS8048A/GSLC174-AC (in manual bypass mode)
SolarEdge SE6000 (AC Coupled).
Standalone SolarEdge SE7600.
SolarWorld 250W panels
In Progress: Generac 22kVA Generator
Coming Soon: Lithium Battery (leaning towards Discover Energy AES 6.6kWh)

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Swampdog on Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:18 pm

I am not an electrician. I don't know what that means or how to answer your question.
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Outback Radian 8048a
Outback MATE3s
Outback HUB
Outback FlexNet DC
SOLAREDGE SE6000A-US

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby pss on Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:09 pm

AC coupling means that in the event of a grid outage, your PV production from the GTI will not cease, but continue to power your loads. It is only the excess power that goes to the grid that would not be consumed. In my case, at peak production, my GTI can output up to 8kWh of power, but my utility says only about 1.5kWh is excess over my loads. So with AC coupling, I still get use of about 6.5 kWh instead of having it lost. What I see as the biggest advantage of this new AC coupling feature is the availability to add panels using microinverters, connected to the Radian, powering your loads and not even dealing with having to sell back to the utility company. This avoids DC to AC inverter functions and is a route to easy system expansion.
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Mike Curran on Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:14 pm

gregorio wrote:What are you using to dump excess production in the event of a grid outage?

Swampdog wrote:I am not an electrician. I don't know what that means or how to answer your question.

If your Solaredge inverter's AC output is connected to the AC output of your Radian, then when there's a grid outage and your Solaredge output has nowhere to go except to your backed up loads, and when they're satisfied into your battery without regulation, how does your system prevent your batteries from being overcharged?

The new Radian firmware provides a method to do this.
http://www.tigoenergy.com/site.php?95b2dca2-ca6c
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221
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Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Swampdog on Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:46 am

I have SolarEdge Optimzers installed with my panels.

My questions regarded the current firmware versions.
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Outback MATE3s
Outback HUB
Outback FlexNet DC
SOLAREDGE SE6000A-US

Re: AC coupled SolarEdge to Radian

Postby Ampster on Sat Mar 30, 2019 7:41 pm

clarkef wrote:.........

One of my promises to my So yeah, I might have gone a bit overboard with 90KW of stored energy. :-)

My Tesla only has 90kWhr and I just drove it across the USA, albeit with a few stops along the way.
Converted 1974 VW Convertible to electric and regularly drive a Fiat 500e and Tesla Model X which are charged at Super Off Peak rates.
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