Taking the guesswork out of solar

One of the major challenges in the adoption of solar-powered systems has been the inability to pinpoint just how much solar energy is available for harvesting for any given installation scenario. Without any proper tools to enable a scientific approach, traditional methods involve taking once-off measurements of the instantaneous charging current from the solar panel and then relying on experience to make judgment on the situation. However, energy intake from solar panels is dependent on many variables. In addition to being impacted by location, it is also highly affected by time of day and season, as well as by possible obstacles or window tinting. These challenges highlight the fact that once-off measurements will oftentimes be unreliable for long term usage.

The solar data logger devises a means to automatically sample the charging current at regular intervals. The aim is to provide a clear picture of the real-world energy intake from a solar power source. Data can be collected over a period of days, weeks or even months. A longer duration will better represent the overall weather conditions at a given location, including seasonal factors. The solar data logger is to be placed in a fixed position for the duration of the measuring period. Usually,this is a glass window where the measurements are to be taken prior to installing a motorized shade. For any given project, solar data loggers can be placed in as many locations and elevations as possible in order to maximize the reliability of data collected.

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