Tag Archives: alternative energy

Solar Power Baby

Well, it certainly took a while, but I’m finally running on solar power. Bought, or as they say in New Zealand, brought a 190W 24V mono-crystalline solar panel and a 30 A MPPT solar controller last week, when I was in town, and hooked it up the other day. So far, so good. Panels are getting quite affordable these days and you can get a good deal for your buck. Prices are between 3-4 NZD per Watt. My 190 W (24V) panel had a price tag of 551 NZD and the MPPT solar controller was 330 NZD (rated at 30 Ampere; on 12V it can run two of these panels, on 24V it can handle almost 4. Continue reading Solar Power Baby

Homebuilt 12 Volt Generator Part II

48$ NZ got me a 6/12 V battery load tester including delivery, and it finally arrived from Christchurch a couple of days ago. These units perform both a simple voltage and a discharge load test on a battery. They do a pretty good job of identifying weak lead acid batteries and I thought it would be quite handy to have one. Continue reading Homebuilt 12 Volt Generator Part II

Homebuilt 12 Volt Generator Part I

My soon to be home and for that matter all of Great Barrier Island doesn’t have any reticulated electricity or water supply. So basically, individual households are living off the grid and utilize a combination of alternative energy systems – such as solar, wind, water and fuel-driven generators – to produce power. With this respect, communities like Great Barrier Island should be regarded as a model to strive for. Continue reading Homebuilt 12 Volt Generator Part I