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Solar Charge Controllers

Solar Charge Controllers are an essential component to charge batteries.

There are two types of controllers: PWMs (Pulse Width Modulation) and MPPTs (Maximum Power Point Tracker).

The first kind adapt the solar arrays voltage to the batteries voltage. The second one harvest the maximum power out of the array, in any weather condition. Thus, a MPPT solar charge controller offers an efficiency higher than a PWM one.

To size your controller, you first have to consider the maximum charge current allowed by your battery bank (generally 10 to 20% for lead batteries : a 100Ah batteries should not be charged by a current higher than 20Amps).

You also have to consider the Voc, Open Circuit Voltage, of your array. Voc should not exceed the maximum input voltage of the controller. Be aware that the Voc increase with the coldness!
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