Reply To: Mobile Solar Power Supply

Centre for Appropriate Technology Discussion Energy Mobile Solar Power Supply Reply To: Mobile Solar Power Supply

Luke Barbagallo

Hey Joshua,

Thanks for your questions!

I’m going to answer them in the order you’ve asked.

1. The aim of developing a portable energy system is to be able to easily deploy power in different locations either seasonally or as events/activities demand. So, it might be moved just twice per year (in and out around the wet/dry season) or, if possible, it might be used to supply power for occasions like ranger work camps, cattle musters, road works camps, on Country meetings, culture camps, or other events which would make it much more useful across a year. Note, the system wouldn’t need to operate while moving, just when in place. The more portable i.e. easy to pack up/redeploy, resilient to road vibration, etc, the more useful it will likely be!

2. The system should be able to cater for both 12V DC and 240V AC loads. The majority of loads are 240V but there is the potential to explore the role of 12V appliances and lights in the future.
The system needs to be able to deliver a minimum 2000W (with surge capacity) at 240V AC.
The System Capacity is required to deliver upwards of 3kWh –and ideally in the region of 8 to10 kWh of electricity per day if not more. Ideally there should be a degree of built in autonomy to cater for overcast conditions. It is important to note that the stored energy required for night time use should reflect the useable amount of energy once the depth of discharge is factored in and not the total capacity of the battery bank. It is anticipated that 60% of the load will be utilised between 06:00 –18:00 and 40% of the load between 18:00 –06:00.Ideally a modular solution will be developed such that different sized solutions can be matched appropriately to the needs in a particular setting.

3. If you go with a trailer-based solution, it will need to be towed by a regular 4WD – use the towing capacity of the Toyota Hilux, Landcruiser, or similar vehicle as a point of reference. It will need to be capable of being towed on 4wd dirt roads so will need to be rugged enough to deal with excessive vibration, dust protected while in transit, and with adequate suspension and ground clearance. If you pursue a 4WD or UteBase System, it will need to be a ‘slip on’ unit to fit on the back of a tray back4WD ute. As above It will need to be capable of being transported on 4wd dirt roads and be rugged enough to deal with excessive vibration and dust protected while in transit. Further, as a slip on/off unit, the weight is a consideration; how many people are required to safely move it?

If you’ve got any further questions, don’t hesitate to reach out.