Voltage showing as zero

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Jayne
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My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
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Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:02 am

Hello,

We run an offgrid system. Last month we had our modem go out and so had a break in our opticsRE reporting, and when we got the internet back online we now find that opticsre is reporting voltage at zero and not reporting the flows to and from the battery (see image).

Image

The system is still providing power, and this morning cut off because the voltage of the batteries hit the low limit, but we aren't getting the information reflected online.

I'm a new user, wondering if anyone has suggestions on what to check/reset to get opticsRE working again?

Thanks,

Jayne

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Jayne
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Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:08 am

I forgot to add that OpticsRE still emailed me this morning to say when the Low Battery Voltage warning had cleared and the batteries returned to operating voltage. So the system still knows what the voltage is - just isn't reporting it for some reason. Also the Mate3 screen is suggesting the batteries are at 0.0V when they are not.

Image

raysun
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My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:43 am

Hmmm...

What caused the modem to "go out"?

It looks like something else might have "gone out" with it.

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Jayne
Forum Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:58 am

We think it could have been lightning, the modem was located over 100 yards from the solar system (connected by a long ethernet cable), the ethernet switch in the solar shed is still working. It is of course possible that something else got fried, any suggestions on what to check please?

raysun
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Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Sun Sep 08, 2019 9:31 am

Does battery voltage show up on the charge controller?

Does the battery State of Charge percentage change on the Mate display during charging/discharging?

Is the Battery Status breaker tripped? Try switching it off and on again.

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Jayne
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Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Sun Sep 08, 2019 9:36 am

No I don't think Voltage is showing up on the charge controller (do you mean via the mate display?)

Yes the SOC changes but is completely incorrect.

raysun
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My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:24 am

Your charge controller is a FlexMax 80, yes? It has it's own display that shows two lines on the main status screen.

The top line is Panel voltage and current.
The bottom line is battery voltage and charge current.

Did you check the Battery Status breaker on the DC side of the FlexPower panel?

pss
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Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by pss » Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:25 pm

This would be my approach to try and deduce what is going on:
1. Disconnect the Mate 3 ethernet connection and then disconnect the mate 3 ethernet cable from the back of the Mate 3 to the Outback hub. This should power down the Mate 3. Disconnect all of the devices plugged into the outback hub, being careful to plug them back in the proper order.

2. First connect the Mate 3 to the outback hub proper port. Observe it power on. Connect the ethernet cable from the mate 3 port to your local internet connection (router, switch, etc).
Establish link to Optics RE. In Optics RE the mate 3 should discover itself as the only device connected to the hub in optics Re. Make certain mate 3 display appears be showing battery voltage properly.
3. Plug the ethernet connection from your inverter into port 1 of the outback hub. Observe the display on the hub and make sure it is communicating with the inverter. It should show up properly in devices on the optics re website.
4. Plug the ethernet connection from your charge controllers, one at a time into port 2,3,4 etc of the outback hub. As they are plugged in, make certain they are discovered properly in the optics RE device list.
5. Last, plug the ethernet connection from the FN-DC into the outback hub. This will reset the FN-DC to report 100% charged SOC in Optics and on Mate 3 display when powered on. To calibrate the FN-DC, charge batteries fully by measuring voltage directly with meter and confirming with specific gravity. When fully charged, unplug ethernet of FN-DC and then plug back in. Now, the FN-DC will report SOC of 100% when you are confident batteries are at 100% of SOC.
6. Confirm in Optics RE all devices reporting properly as OK.

Report back please with observed behaviors for each of your devices so further diagnostic advice can be offered.

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Jayne
Forum Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:14 pm

Thank you both so much for your help.

We switched all the breakers off and on again and rebooted the whole system and OpticsRE started reporting the voltage! \:D/

When I got back to my laptop I had a email from OpticsRE saying "Inverter on port 1 has detected a Battery Voltage Sensor Failure".

Given that now it is working I'm not sure if this is something I should be worried about? Do I need to get a replacement sensor? (Not easy in the middle of the Mexican jungle.)

Thanks again for your support! O:)

raysun
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Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:38 pm

Hooray for a system reset!

Did the Battery Voltage Sensor Failure turn on the red Alarm indicator on the Mate?

This is often caused by the battery voltage being too low when the inverter starts up. Charging the battery fully will normally help avoid this error.

Also, I noticed the system is using OB 200NC batteries. I use these as well in my off-grid system on Hawaii Island. There are a couple of charge parameters which need setting different from the defaults. They also have a slightly tricky operating profile. In order to get the most out of these batteries, a quality battery monitor is a must, IME. Does the system have a FLEXNet DC or other battery monitor?

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Jayne
Forum Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:02 pm

No red alarm indicator as far as I know. (Our solar system is located quite far from our house, I haven't been back since we got it all reset and working, but there was no red alarm when we were there.)

I'd love to know more about the charge parameters and special operating profile for our batteries. We do have a FlexNet DC. This is our system setup:

Image

raysun
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Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:16 pm

OK. Great.

So this is a FlexPower One pre-configured panel that has all the components mounted to it?

The battery is eight 200NC monoblocks in two parallel strings of four monoblocks in series? Mounted in an Outback IBR-48-2 rack or similar?

It would be helpful to update your profile with a concise list of any other components that make up your entire system: PV panel models and array wiring scheme; Outback component models and FlexPower model (so the balance of system is known); battery components and racking/wiring; generator type and rating (if any), external charging sources (if any), non-Outback balance-of-system components like solar array combiner box and disconnect switches, lightning and surge protectors, etc. Much of the info is already there. All of it is helpful when diagnosing issues that may arise.

Also, do you have a digital volt/ohm meter? Even a very inexpensive one is a useful diagnostic tool.

User avatar
Jayne
Forum Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Sun Sep 15, 2019 6:40 pm

Hello,

Apologies for the delayed reply.

Yes the components are all mounted together. We have two strings of four batteries - they are on a concrete shelf not in a outback rack.

I'll have to do some research to update with all the other components of the system.

I do have a digital voltmeter.

Is there a post that you can direct me to that has the special settings I should use for the batteries?

Thank you again for your help!

Jayne

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:09 pm

Hi Jayne,

Outback tech support walked me through recommended settings. I'll try to collect them into a post.

Do you have a backup generator?

User avatar
Jayne
Forum Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:12 am
My RE system: Off-Grid
12 x 350W solar panels (4200 kW)
Mate3s
HUB comms manager
FlexPower FP1 FXR 3648 A 1 3.6KW 120V AC INVERTER
FlexMax FM80 CHARGE CONTROLLER
FlexNet DC
8 x 200AH BATTERIES Nano Carbon @48v
Location: Nayarit, Mexico
Contact:

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by Jayne » Mon Sep 16, 2019 9:31 am

Yes we do have a generator, it's a generac GP3250 from Costco.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:32 am

Charge parameters - Inverter Charger
Screenshot_20190916-084907_Chrome.jpg
Last edited by raysun on Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:34 am

Charge parameters - FlexMax charge controller
Screenshot_20190916-073306_Chrome.jpg

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:35 am

Charge parameters - FlexNET DC
Screenshot_20190916-073458_Chrome.jpg

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:40 am

I think that's it for the 200NC battery @48V/350AH (Eight 12V monoblocks in two strings of 4 each.)

Maximum charge current 106ADC.

The settings shown sets the charge priority to the Flexmax over the Inverter charger (which is powered by the generator.)

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:49 am

Inverter Charger - AC input current limit
20190916_074208.jpg
This should be set in accordance with the amount of current the generator can supply. When generator is being used, it must supply both "house loads" and battery charging current.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:54 am

Mate - Maximum AC Input current from generator (designated AC2 in my setup)
20190916_074532.jpg
The AC input should be set to the maximum output the generator can maintain, or less.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:57 am

All these settings are shown in the OpticsRE device map.

They can be set locally via the Mate.

LOCK Key
141 (Password)
Settings

Then navigate to the four devices' settings for battery setup and charging.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:59 am

All these settings are shown in the OpticsRE device map.

They can be set locally via the Mate.

LOCK Key
141 (Password)
Settings

Then navigate to the four devices' settings for battery setup and charging.

raysun
Forum Czar
Posts: 755
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower One: FX3048T, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
Outback 200NC batteries (8 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 Strings @ 2 Series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings @ 2 series)

Re: Voltage showing as zero

Post by raysun » Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:28 am

Temperature compensation must be used. The Remote Temperature Sensor (RTS) should be plugged into the inverter, and the sensor end adhered to the side of a monoblock in the middle of one of the two strings.
20190916_080233.jpg

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