Jump to content

BuyTwoWayRadios.com

Photo

Emergency Solar Power Source


  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 Lscott

Lscott

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 306 posts
  • GMRS Callsign:WRBZ532
  • Ham Callsign:KC8LDO

Posted 20 November 2020 - 01:04 AM

This topic comes up every once in a while in other threads but not discussed on its own. 

 

A number of people got GMRS, and or Ham, radios for use during an emergency but haven't given much thought to how the radio(s) will be powered once the battery pack is dead, for portables, and how to recharge them.

 

For an extended power outage, over a large area, gas powered generators likely won't work for long due to the fact the gas pumps likely won't have power either to refill the gas cans. One case in point was the great northeast power blackout in 2003.

 

https://en.wikipedia...lackout_of_2003

 

I'm in the Detroit area and the gas stations had no power except for a few. Those were only pumping gas for police, fire etc. nothing for anybody else.

 

One solution is using a small solar power system to keep a battery charged up. There are plans all over the Internet for building "solar power generators" with one example below.

 

https://www.buildits...r_generator.pdf

 

Some of the info above is out of date, but the general idea of how to build one isn't.

 

So what plans have people made to power their radio equipment when the grid goes down?

 



#2 gman1971

gman1971

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 364 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 20 November 2020 - 05:32 AM

This topic comes up every once in a while in other threads but not discussed on its own. 

 

A number of people got GMRS, and or Ham, radios for use during an emergency but haven't given much thought to how the radio(s) will be powered once the battery pack is dead, for portables, and how to recharge them.

 

For an extended power outage, over a large area, gas powered generators likely won't work for long due to the fact the gas pumps likely won't have power either to refill the gas cans. One case in point was the great northeast power blackout in 2003.

 

https://en.wikipedia...lackout_of_2003

 

I'm in the Detroit area and the gas stations had no power except for a few. Those were only pumping gas for police, fire etc. nothing for anybody else.

 

One solution is using a small solar power system to keep a battery charged up. There are plans all over the Internet for building "solar power generators" with one example below.

 

https://www.buildits...r_generator.pdf

 

Some of the info above is out of date, but the general idea of how to build one isn't.

 

So what plans have people made to power their radio equipment when the grid goes down?

 

Lots of LiPos with a BMS, a 100W solar panel on the roof of the house and a 12VDC battery charger for LiPos. :)

 

G.



#3 Lscott

Lscott

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 306 posts
  • GMRS Callsign:WRBZ532
  • Ham Callsign:KC8LDO

Posted 20 November 2020 - 10:37 AM

Lots of LiPos with a BMS, a 100W solar panel on the roof of the house and a 12VDC battery charger for LiPos. :)

 

G.

What is the capacity of the battery bank you have?

 

I have a collection of LiFePO4 battery packs, 3AH to 40AH.

 

Also I have several solar panels, none are permanently mounted outside, just deployed when needed. They range in size from 50 watts down to one at 5 watts.

 

I use MPPT's specifically designed for the battery chemistry, most are for LiFePO4 and one is for Lead Acid.

 

I would recommend that anybody looking for a battery type for portable or emergencies not to use Lead Acid types unless cost is a major factor. I've ruined enough gel cells over the years and gave up on them.  My recommendation is use LiFePO4 battery packs, yeah they cost a lot more but they hold a change for months or longer without requiring a trickle charger like Lead Acid. This type of battery doesn't get ruined buy sitting around for long periods partially discharged. Lead Acid types will sulfate ruining the battery.



#4 gman1971

gman1971

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 364 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 20 November 2020 - 10:41 PM

Yeah, +1 to the SLA stuff... avoid it.

 

I have a bunch 6S and 4S 16Ah LiPos all wired on x4 separate 20S packs, all with Yimia BMS, those used to be my eBike/eTrikes batteries... They still well well with a 200W 12VDC regulator, and the radio barely puts any strain on packs that were used to deliver 7 kW on my eTrikes... :)

 

 

G.






1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users