The reliability of wildlife deterrents, particularly when protecting human life, is critical. When living or working in remote areas where there the main source of power is from solar energy, you need to be able to count on your solar charger. Is it functioning at full capacity, is it keeping the battery sufficiently charged, even during periods of overcast days?
THE MARGO SOLAR CONTROLLER (MPPT) is an inexpensive add-on to Margo Solar Kits to gain up to 30% more charge. The MPPT can be added on to Margo 12V Solar Kits (#1102, #1103) and the Margo Solar 12 Electric Fencer (#3003).
THE TECHNOLOGY An MPPT, or maximum power point tracker, is an electronic DC to DC converter that converts a higher voltage DC output from solar panels down to the lower voltage needed to charge batteries. MPPT technology allows the solar panel to operate in its peak efficiency range, typically around 18v the controller then steps this down through a switching regulator to 14v for charging a gel cell battery. The MPPT also prevents over or undercharging batteries, as well as modulating the charge based on temperature. This ensures maximum battery life.
The Margo Supplies MPPT Solar Controller ' add-on #1610' , designed in-house, is a snap-on installation for Power Sonic 12v battery (#PS-12140).
Great for areas with long duration of overcast days. LED display for bad battery and fast charging. Push button terminals for easy connection. Uses minimal power when in storage. No need to remove the board for extended periods of storage. A standard 12v trickle charger can be connected to the battery + and the ground connections.
Optimum Solar Charging: Solar Charging is an excellent source of clean, free energy available nearly everywhere. By following these best practices you will get the maximum power from your solar charger.
South Facing: Solar panels should be facing in the direction that receives the most light. In the Northern hemisphere, a single panel array should be facing directly south.
Clean and Clear of Obstructions: A small obstruction causes big losses in charging capacity. Panels should be clean of dirt and debris. Use a window cleaner and paper towel wash the panels regularly. Always handle the panels with care to avoid scratching it. Shadows also cause a significant drop in power, the shadow something as small as a fence post will reduce charging power. The panel should have an unobstructed view of the sky as possible. While most physical obstructions cause a large drop in power, this is actually not true of snow. Panels gain most of their energy from infrared spectrum light, which easily penetrates snow. Panels with snow on them typically only produce 4% less power than clean panels.
Panel Angle: The height of the sun changes throughout the year and as you go further north, the change becomes more dramatic. During the summer, the optimal charging position is nearly flat, to gain the benefit from the overhead sun high in the sky. During the winter months, panels mounted nearly vertical will have higher charging efficiency. Our panels are fixed at a compromise of 45° which provides the best year-round charging efficiency. The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology in Edmonton conducted a multi-year study of the effect of snow and angles on solar charging capacity. 'View their full-report here'
Using the Margo MPPT: Our in-house designed MPPT effectively adds the equivalent 30% more hours of sunlight per day. The MPPT is ideal for areas prone to low light, such as coastal areas with high-cloud cover.
The MPPT in use with Margo Solar Chargers: Margo solar chargers with and without solar controller add-on, for SKU #1100, #1200, #1805, #1808) 100% volume, day only, medium setting, 8 recordings, and #3003.
INSTALLING AND USING YOUR SOLAR CONTROLLER The silver plus MUST align with the positive RED terminal on the battery as shown. Failure to do so will result in damage to the controller.
Electrical connections (left to right). *NO TOOLS Necessary - just push the orange terminals.
- 1. Battery +12
- 2. Ground
- 3. Ground
- 4. Solar Input
LED Status Indicators: Red - Bad Battery or Solar Timeout Green - Normal charging greater than 10mA.
The controller boards are coated with water-resistant Silicon conformal coating however direct contact with harsh weather is not advised.