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Smart charge controller with Axperts


Gunners
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Hello All

My solar setup is as follows:

  • ·       2 * Axpert inverters (SOL-I-AX-5M)

  • ·       24 * 265W Canadian solar panels

  • ·       6 * 2.4Kw pylontech batteries

  • ·       ICC software

During the day, only 1 inverter shows PV power input and ICC shows MPPT 2 as 0 amps. I believe the MPPT controller on the 2nd inverter is faulty. Would that be correct?

I would like to get a smart charge controller instead of sending it in to get fixed. Based on my setup, what controller would be recommend please? Would I need a smart controller for each Axpert or could I connect the controller to just the 2nd inverter?

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1 hour ago, Gunners said:

During the day, only 1 inverter shows PV power input and ICC shows MPPT 2 as 0 amps. I believe the MPPT controller on the 2nd inverter is faulty. Would that be correct?

A few questions, Gunners:

  1. I assume that the parallel setup of the 2x Axperts is correctly done (current sharing and comms cable) - correct?
  2. How are your panels connected? Split between both inverters? 
  3. What max Wattage have you seen reported for MPPT 1 on ICC? And was that limited by load or actual production?
  4. Have you checked what each inverter is reporting on its built-in display for PV?

I am not 100% sure how ICC reports MPPT values in a parallel setup. I do not know if ICC not already combines the values of both MPPTs and reports this combined value as MPPT 1 (but this would actually be my guess). I do not know if MPPT 2 is only reserved for inverters with dual MPPTs (again this would be my guess). Maybe confirm with ICC support how exactly MPPT reporting in a dual setup is being reported

So before you declare that MPPT as not working and spend money, I would first recommend a thorough fault-finding 

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Hi Wolfandy

11 hours ago, wolfandy said:

I assume that the parallel setup of the 2x Axperts is correctly done (current sharing and comms cable) - correct?

Correct.

11 hours ago, wolfandy said:

How are your panels connected? Split between both inverters? 

Split between both. 4 strings of 6 panels.

11 hours ago, wolfandy said:

What max Wattage have you seen reported for MPPT 1 on ICC? And was that limited by load or actual production?

Have you checked what each inverter is reporting on its built-in display for PV?

Around about 2030W currently on inverter 1 and (25-30W) on inverter 2 ... not limited by load since PV was being used to charge batteries at the time. I have seen total PV of around 5500W being produced before.

image.thumb.png.925fa3a23d01963bb60b7e78cab82bd6.png

 

 

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2 hours ago, Gunners said:

Split between both. 4 strings of 6 panels.

Does this mean that each inverter has 2 strings of 6 panels connected?

I do not have any experience in running PV in a parallel setup (am using a separate MPPT in my parallel setup), but according to the Axpert manual 'Each inverter should connect to PV modules separately'

3 hours ago, Gunners said:

Around about 2030W currently on inverter 1 and (25-30W) on inverter 2 ... not limited by load since PV was being used to charge batteries at the time. I have seen total PV of around 5500W being produced before.

This does sound strange. Judging by your screenshot, it seems that the MPPT in your 2nd inverter has voltage on the input but is not drawing any amps. Yet if you have 12 panels connected to each inverter, then the MPPT in inverter 1 would by itself not been able to produce the 5500W you have seen before

Have you tried swapping the PV connections around between the 2 inverters to see if the problem is related to the MPPT or maybe one of the strings?

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1 hour ago, wolfandy said:

have 12 panels connected to each inverter, then the MPPT in inverter 1 would by itself not been able to produce the 5500W you have seen before

Apologies ... let me rephrase. 5500W was total PV power being produced before the issue I am having, so PV being produced per inverter would show around 2800W each.

1 hour ago, wolfandy said:

Have you tried swapping the PV connections around between the 2 inverters to see if the problem is related to the MPPT or maybe one of the strings?

Yes ... from the attached pic, I have swapped the black and red and the blue and yellow. No change on the inverters, PV was still only being produced by 1 inverter.

IMG_7526.thumb.jpg.76cbb2977e196e1328d2a75756e9e0bc.jpgIMG_7527.thumb.jpg.6f7c7371060ba88950081563849cd7ad.jpg

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1 hour ago, Gunners said:

Yes ... from the attached pic, I have swapped the black and red and the blue and yellow. No change on the inverters, PV was still only being produced by 1 inverter.

Ok - thanks. And it was the same inverter #1 that also produced PV before you did the swap? So that you have eliminated the PV strings as a problem?

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58 minutes ago, wolfandy said:

Ok - thanks. And it was the same inverter #1 that also produced PV before you did the swap? So that you have eliminated the PV strings as a problem?

Correct ... same inverter. Does that confirm MPPT is faulty?

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54 minutes ago, Gunners said:

Correct ... same inverter. Does that confirm MPPT is faulty?

Thanks. I'm not the technical expert here, but I believe this strongly supports the assumption of a faulty MPPT. I could not come up with any other explanation for both strings working on inverter #1 but not on inverter #2

Maybe @Coulomb has another idea for something I might have missed?

In the meantime, I would recommend reading this thread that helped me answer a few questions about adding an external MPPT to my system. I have completely moved my PV off my Axperts onto an external MPPT, but I understand it is also possible to run both the Axpert internal and an external together at the same time. So it should not be a problem for your to leave one set of panels directly on your inverter #1 and move the other set to an external MPPT. You just need to be a bit careful with the max PV charging amps settings on both to ensure that your Pylons do not receive more power than they like if both are running on full power

I am running a Victron MPPT and am really happy with it (and ICC is also able to integrate the Victron MPPT data into the dashboard)

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