ProVista Solar Charge Controllers
Solar charge controllers perform a vital role in a solar system, regulating the voltage from a solar panel to a deep cycle battery to avoid overcharging the 12V battery. A 12V solar panel generates around 18-20V which would eventually damage a deep cycle battery. So the primary role of the controller is to regulate the PV voltage from 18-20V to around 13.5-14.0V, a safe charging level for a 12V battery.
Our ProVista range of controllers are suitable for caravans, RV's, marine and communication applications in 12V or 24V systems. They range range from basic (ISC-1000) to sophisticated (ISC-3042) ensuring there's one for almost every low voltage solar system.
|PWM Control||PWM Control||MPPT Control*|
|Compact||Auto Battery Detect (12/24V)||Auto Battery Detect (12/24V)|
|Load Control||Adj. Charging Voltage||Can charge 12W battery from 24V panels|
|LED Display||Night Light Function||Night Light Function|
|Electronic Blocking||Electronic Blocking|
|LCD Display||LCD Display|
|High Efficiency||High Efficiency|
* Maximum power point tracking, or MPPT, is a term used to describe the type of electronic circuit function employed within the controller. Standard PWM controllers simply regulate current from the panels regardless of the panels achievable output voltage thereby reducing the usable power.
MPPT on the other hand allows the PV module to output at its maximum voltage and current (Power Point) throughout the day. It then efficiently converts this power (by DC-DC conversion) to a voltage suitable for the battery being charged.
|Max Input Current (A)||10||30||30|
|Max Load Current (A)||10||30||30|
|System Voltage (V)||12||12 (24)||12 (24)|
|Max PV Voltage (VoC)||<27||<45||<65|
|Float Voltage (V)||13.4-14.2||13.5-14.4 (27-28.8)||13-14.2 (26-28.4)|
|Bulk Voltage (V)||14.4||13.8-14.8 (27.6-29.6)||13.8-14.8 (27.6-29.6)|
|Low Voltage Reconnect||12.5||12 (24)||12 (24)|
|Low Voltage Disconnect*||11-11.5||11 (22)||11 (22)|
|Operating Temperature (degC)||-20 to 50||-20 to 50||-20 to 50|
|Wire Entry||3mm sq||8mm sq||8mm sq|
|Dimensions LWH (mm)||118x90x31||169x97x44||200x153x68|
|Ingress Protection Rating (IP)||-||32||32|
*Low Voltage Disconnect (LVD) is an important and useful feature which is included in our controllers. It monitors the battery level and will disconnect any load connected to the battery if the voltage drops to a point where continued draw can cause permanent battery damage. This feature is a great protection for your deep cycle battery investment as a battery that has been discharged too deeply will have a far shorter serviceable life.
Charge Controller Selection
Selecting a suitably sized controller is a relatively straight forward exercise. Add up the amp ratings of the solar panels connected to the controller and ensure the number is less than the rated amperage of the controller. For example, if a solar panel is rated at 8A then a minimum 10A controller would be required.
Consideration must also be given to the future and whether the system is likely to be added to over time. Purchasing a controller with an amp rating higher than what you need today could save you money in the long terms if more panels are to be added. In our example above, purchasing a 30A controller instead of a 10A controller means that another 2 panels can be added without needing to upgrade the controller.
Charge Controller Maintenance
Modern charge controllers require little or no maintenance other than regular checks of the wired connections to ensure they are not loose or beginning to corrode.
Ideally the controller should be mounted close to the battery to minimise voltage drop between the controller and the battery but in an area where there is at least some air flow to remove heat build up. Whilst our controllers are suitable for temperatures up to 50 degC, performance (efficiency) will be reduced the higher the ambient temperature.
We also recommend placing a fuse between the solar panel and the controller as an additional safety mechanism to protect the controller, battery and appliances, plus it reduces fire risk.
We offer a 12 month warranty on our controllers.
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