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Old 03-15-2016, 01:33 PM   #1
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Solar Charging question.

I'm starting to conceptualize what a solar charging setup might entail and have read all the recent threads on this subject. I have room for 400-500 watts of panels and am considering the Prostar MPPT 40 or 40 M controller. Two questions (for starters):

1) Do I need the unit with the monitor, or can I just use the Magnum ME-RC remote to monitor the system. I have the Magnum 2812, with it's assorted bells and whistles.

2) I presume that I do not need to connect the "To Load" +/- terminals, only the terminals to the battery bank?

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Old 03-15-2016, 03:33 PM   #2
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Similar setup with a Morningside control. Didn't use the to Load +/- terminals.

While I have a Magnum Me gauge I used a separate ammeter so that I can monitor the output all the time. I put the gauge right under the control.
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Old 03-15-2016, 04:11 PM   #3
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I would look at the Morningstar TS-MPPT-45 Tristar 45 Amp. It is about the same price as the Prostar and the Prostar one looks like it is specifically designed as a lighting controller, not a battery charger.


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Old 03-15-2016, 04:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djmarchand View Post
I would look at the Morningstar TS-MPPT-45 Tristar 45 Amp. It is about the same price as the Prostar and the Prostar one looks like it is specifically designed as a lighting controller, not a battery charger.

David
David: the Spec sheet and installation manual indicates that the Prostar unit is a solar battery charger: "The NEW ProStar MPPT™ is a mid-range MPPT solar charge controller with TrakStar Technology™ that provides maximum power point tracking (MPPT) battery charging for off-grid photovoltaic (PV) systems up to 1100 watts. Available with and without advanced built-in meter. This device is ideal for industrial and residential applications. A Wire Box for ProStar MPPT accessory to reduce hazards associated with exposed wires and connections can be purchased separately" It has a night phase, bulk charge, absorption and float. Also there is a programmable equalize phase.

ProStar MPPT ยป Morningstar Corporation

Thanks for your info Marty. I will probably go with the unit that has the monitor but I think it would have some redundancy.

Jim

I prefer the footprint of this unit as well as the lower cost. It is made by Morningstar.
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Old 03-15-2016, 05:34 PM   #5
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David: I looked at the webinar and he said it amongst other application, it is suitable for RV and Marine purposes. You are correct though: you can set it up to control lighting and other remote situations, for dusk to dawn applications etc.

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Old 03-15-2016, 05:43 PM   #6
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Jim:


I forgot to mention: the Tristar has a very robust looking heat sink/dissipater. It just looks more solid than the Prostar.


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Old 03-15-2016, 07:02 PM   #7
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Use Load only if you want to run a DC device directly off you controller (i.e., not connected to the battery).
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Old 03-15-2016, 08:19 PM   #8
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Also, if you are going to run an MPPT controller, you will get more out of your panels if you set them up in series (considering the maximum voltage rating of the controller. It looks like the Morningstar prostar mppt controller can accommodate 5 12 V panels in series.
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Old 03-16-2016, 08:02 AM   #9
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When cruising you will usually chose a higher full charge and float setting to help the batts.

When storing the boat a lower V will be selected to slow water usage.
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