Solar Panel Battery Charging
With more and more amateur radio operators taking to the field to play radio, and while off the grid most of us are using solar panels to charge the batteries utilized with out HF transceivers and other related gear.
If your only using one panel along with a charge controller, its simple enough to make the connections to the battery or batteries you will be using for a power source.
If you are using two or more solar panels daisy chained together, its important that all the solar panels are connected to the charge controller, as you don't want one panel by-passing the charger controller causing a potential overcharge of your batteries and damaging the batteries.
My photo shows how I made the connections through the use of powerpoles, allowing for all the components that consists of the my two solar panels, the 7 Ah charge controller, the batteries in the power-can, and the transceiver to be connected up.
You may be asking why I didn't install a powerpole connection for the input to the power-can instead of the recepticale arrangement I used.
Being that a 12 volt female recepticale resides in all vehicles, and in many other applications, I chose to use this metod with my power-can, allowing my solar charging system to be used to charge the battery in my mobile, or the batteries residing in the cargo bay for my weather station, or.....well you get it.
Mind you, I do have other adapter cables made up and terminated with powerpoles when I need a different cable for a different application.
The cabling that is powering my FT-897D is the fused assembly coming off of the powerpole connection located on the lid of the power can.
The momentary button located there is to check on the charge in the batteries.
When the button is pressed the series of LED'S imbedded in the lid light in unison depending on the charge level of the batteries.
Of course it goes without saying that I keep a good stock of powerpoles of various sizes available for my on going projects, as I have never found a connector that is as versatile as the powerpole.
For a more complete explanation on using powerpoles.....
Click on the photo for a closer look.....