Emerald Medical Centre (EMC) on grid with battery backup
Energy Connections have worked together with the Emerald Medical centre and have designed and installed a 30 k watt commercial solar system that will greatly benefit the facility and on average supply half of the centres 3 phase power requirements. The newly renovated centre will serve the Emerald community with their mission of providing the highest standard of patient care and having their experienced staff of doctors and nurses committed to promoting health, wellbeing and disease prevention to all patients. The staff offers a range of services from Pathology to Allied health.
The system comprise 90 x 327 watt Sunpower solar panels mounted on several roof lines in between a multitude of equipment and obstacles including vents, sky lights and air conditioner compressors.
2 x 15 kwatt Fronius inverters made up the grid connected solar component with these located in a purpose made service area located under the stairs, which also houses the battery back-up system.
The most impressive part of the system is the battery back-up system, this comprises of 2 x Sodium Nickel Chloride (SoNick) batteries and 3 x Victron 48V 8000VA Quattro inverters running in three phase. This back-up system also has a generator input which will allow a pre wired generator input on the back of the building to be used when extended outages occur.
The buildings wiring and switch boards have been reconfigured so that certain circuits will function when and if the power goes out (in the hills this happens often). Dedicated back-up circuits include the computers in reception, lights, server room including air conditioner, medicine fridges upstairs, front electric door, Phone and alarm systems, some consulting rooms upstairs and a couple downstairs. This backup will allow the centre to function with basic facilities until the grid power has been restored, or a generator has been hooked up to the building.
The solar system will halve the centres power bills, reduce the centres reliance on dirty grid supplied power and dramatically reduce its impact on the environment. The back-up system will give them peace of mind and ensure that expensive medications will survive black outs, allowing the centre to function in an emergency.
Grid connected system comprises:
The Battery back-up system comprises:
Tired old off-grid system gets a face lift
BEFORE & AFTER
Here is one of Energy Connections latest installations in the town Ellinbank, Victoria just south of Warragul, a project to revitalise an older existing 24 volt system. The previous system had been added on to overtime, but the panels were old and all over the place. One inverter had failed, the batteries from 1993 had had enough and the old generator and battery charger had stopped working, with the client running out of power every night.
First step was to strip out the old gear and wiring, the old batteries will be scrapped and recycled, the old working equipment will be sold off by the customer to recoup some of the costs. The customer's solar panels were upgraded to 20 new 250 watt panels and tilt frame added to the rear array for improved winter performance, an increase in capacity to 5kwatt and with a change to the latest Victron 250 100 MPPT a massive increase in charging efficiency.
The improved system was left looking much neater with minimal wire exposed, fewer products resulting in a clean, easy to understand functional system (refer to before and after images above). The new Pramac Generator sourced by the client has been automated to start by the Selectronic depending on demand and state of charge of the 48 volt battery bank. The system can also be programmed at a later date with newer chemistry battery types like Lithium or Sodium Nickel Chloride Batteries (SoNick).
Products that were used for the new 48 volt system were;
Is he the Worlds first Off Grid robotic horse ?
WORKING WITH THE INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE OF DRESSAGE
Energy Connections has teamed up with the International Institute of Dressage (IID) to supply a unique solution to run their training facility and possibly the worlds first all Off Grid robotic horse, Stanley (pictured above). The IID was founded by Natasha Althoff , now a Grand Prix dressage rider, and has set up the institute in the small town of Garfield, Victoria. At the International Institute of Dressage their focus is on coaching with Olympic dressage specialists to help riders that are looking to progress to the next level of their riding. The IID go by their mission statement " To inspire, educate and support" therefore providing a goal-focused, supportive and high standard environment for the students and their dressage horses.
A recent new addition to the facility is Stanley the robotic horse and is being used as an eventing simulator for the students at IID.This training set up includes three flat screen TV's that face the rider during the simulation, with a few safety mats surrounding a fully saddled robotic horse, Stanley. He even has his own realistic mane and tail!
The original power requirements of the new facilities meant that a very costly transformer upgrade would have been required, this also meant costly service charges and on going electricity bills, with no guarantee of supply. The solutions go off the Grid, the system comprises 10 Kwatts of DC Coupled Solar and 10 Kwatts of DC Coupled solar, the facility also uses all LED,s and solar air conditioners.
The completely Off Grid system, uses Victron Energy's products including 2 x 150/85 MPPT Blue Solar charge controllers, Quattro 10 kva inverter charger, BMV battery monitor and is monitored via a color control. The AC coupled component comprises of 2 x Fronius Primo 5,s controller by the Victron Quattro. Battery bank 48 volt sealed Gel batteries and back up power supplied by a large Cummins diesel automatic start 12 kva genset.
The robotic black stallion is sure to make the International Institute of Dressage's training programs a fun and innovative way to learn and progress to the next level of their students riding.