A new 14 panel 3.71 kW solar system was installed on the vessel.
A solid aluminium framework was constructed on the roof of the wheel house and aft upper cabin and extended over the rear upper deck. Fourteen aluminium frames were then bolted to the framework and the panels mounted into the frames.
A bank of 12 X 2 Volt 1,960 amp hour batteries was installed in the engine room on a specially constructed and strengthened platform. A steel frame was constructed to completely enclose the bank of batteries and fix them to the platform.
Finally a 2,000 kg ratchet strap was used to further prevent any movement of the battery pack. The total weight of the batteries is approximately 1.4 tonnes.
A solar/shore power/generated power control system was installed to manage the power requirements of the vessel. When not on shore power or when the generator is not running the vessel operates off solar power through the battery and inverter systems.
If a shore power connection is made or the generator started the system automatically switches from batteries/solar to the non solar source.
The vessel’s 24 volt ‘house supply’ comes from the battery bank when no other power is available.
A system controller and monitoring station is located in the engine room with a relayed display in the wheel house.
The system consists of the following components:
1. 12 X Sonnen 2 V 1,960 aH gel batteries
2. 1 X BMV-700 Battery monitor
3. 1 X 230V 7,000 watt isolating transformer
4. 1 X 24V 8,000 watt Quattro inverter charger
5. 1 X Digi multi controller
6. 14 X SunEdisson 265 watt solar panels
7. 2 X MPPT 150/70 panel controllers
8. 2 X Victron colour controllers
9. 1 X 12/24V 220A Battery protect
The only other battery systems on the vessel are as follows:
Four X 6 volt heavy duty batteries with their own charger mounted in the focsal. Used for the anchor winch
Two X 12 volt heavy duty batteries mounted in the rudder flat and charged from the engine room. These are used for the tender winch.