Add battery back-up power option to existing grid-tied PV and solar systems: Page 13 of 14

August 05, 2013 //By Mark Mays
Add battery back-up power option to existing grid-tied PV and solar systems
Mark Mays of OutBack Power explains how to add a battery back-up power option to existing grid-tied PV and solar systems.
VDC below the current temperature compensated charging set-point. If there is abundant surplus power from the GT, then ROCB cycling may be as frequent as six minutes. Manually turning on more loads connected to the critical load panel, or using a diversion load, can decrease the cycling, but it will not harm the ROCB as the cycle of the circuit breakers and ROCB motor exceed 10,000 cycles. If the system is properly sized and loads defined as “critical” typically remaining running, frequent cycling should not be a problem and will not damage any of the OutBack devices.
 
Other smart features of the AC Coupling MATE3 function include a regular 15 second check of the high battery set-point in the event the occupants manually close the ROCB when it should be open, and will re-open the ROCB to ensure the batteries are not overcharged through user error. Another feature is the MATE3’s checking for an active grid when the ROCB has an open command, so if the grid power returns while the ROCB is open then the MATE3 will re-close the ROCB and allow the GT to return to selling to the grid. The GSLC175-AC-120/240 AC Coupling load center comes with a Quick-Start Guide which includes detailed diagrams of the control circuit and MATE3 inverter settings.
 
Overall, this AC Coupling solution from OutBack has considerable advantages: it is easy to size, easy to install, does not require external hardware, and is less expensive. It uses intelligent temperature compensated controls and provides back-feed protection if a generator is part of the system. While simpler and more cost-effective than the frequency dithering-dependent “one-size-fits-all” approach of other AC Coupling schemes, the OutBack solution provides safer, more stable and generator-friendly battery backup power for existing grid-tied inverter systems up to 6 kW that won’t leave all that PV power stranded on the roof the next time disaster strikes. When implemented using the OutBack
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