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Building Off Grid Home in Orkney

Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:49 am
by derek_blacklockuk
I am building an off grid home on Westray in Orkney and would really like some advice and hear people's thoughts.

My current design for energy is the following:

Leading Edge 300 watt wind turbine with charge controller
1 Solvis 250 PV panel
Tracer reguator
2 Haze gel batteries about 120 amp hours at 24 volt
Steca 350 inverter

My main reason for posting this is that people on this forum recomment Trace inverters but I can't find a UK supplier.

Secondly there is a lot of discussion about gel batteries but I will be storing mine in my garage which will also be
a workshop so I am worried about gases.

If anybody can help I would be very grateful.

Re: Building Off Grid Home in Orkney

Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:57 am
by Crickleymal
Gel batteries are less prone to outgassing than car style lead acid batteries although they can do if overcharged. If your charge controller is pretty bullet proof you should be ok. I've seen an uninterruptible power supply which ran a radiotherapy "magic bullet" machine and that had something like 30 12V batteries in it. This was in an enclosed room with air extract fans and the UPS was made of steel with a ventillation grill and a couple of fans.

The vitally important thing as you can probably guess is adequate ventilation and prevention of over charging. Even if the cells are overcharged by mistake then so long as the hydrogen is vented to the outside world you'll be ok.