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Fourteen, 10 W halogen bulbs, wired in 7 series groups.

Fourteen, 10 W halogen bulbs, wired in 7 series groups.

The 12 volt panels were mounted on the south face of the second story roof and wired in series and parallel to produce 8.4 amps at 24 volts. To avoid penetrations in the aging roof, the steel mounting channels were seated in eight, basketball-sized concrete lumps attached to the roof.

The two, 33 mm2 (#2 AWG) PV leads are outdoor rated and run without conduit for about 20 meters (66 ft.), where they end up inside the house, at the ground floor "solar closet." The positive and negative PV wires end at a fused disconnect. From the disconnect, the wires run into a Steca Solarix Delta, 20 amp charge controller. From there, the wires connect to a fused power line into the bank of four, 12 volt, 180 amp-hour, flooded, lead-acid, Varta 82056 Solar batteries, wired in series and parallel for 360 amp-hours at 24 volts.

The system powers several DC loads in the house. Two, 15 amp circuits provide service to the kitchen and dining area lights. These circuits power eight, 12 volt, 10 watt halogen bulbs over the sink and cooking area. The lights are wired in series in four, 24 volt pairs. Two, 25 watt

All the loads added up to an average consumption of just under a kilowatt-hour per day. It was estimated that the house could get by in wintertime with four, 70 watt, German-made, single crystal, Solon panels. In the summer, these modules produce well over the needed kilowatt-hour per day. Maggie's farm is located in a high, dry, region, with a climate like Colorado's. I was told that they receive about 3.5 peak sun hours per day in winter, and 7 in the summer.

Maggie Nolan's System Costs (1990)

Item

Cost Spanish Pesatas

US$*

4 Solon panels, 70 W

280,000

$1,556

Berel inverter, 1 KW

140,000

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