Author Topic: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!  (Read 40130 times)

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Offline EEVblog

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Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« on: December 06, 2015, 02:57:06 pm »
One of Dave's LG Mono-X solar panels has mysteriously shattered!
Daily solar output data: http://pvoutput.org/list.jsp?userid=22501
Sorry for the audio and video quality, this was shot on my phone.

 

Offline djQUAN

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2015, 03:16:12 pm »
Stray bullet perhaps? or someone with a slingshot and BB/marble?

PV modules are made with tempered glass which are pretty strong against wind and hail but shatter into a million pieces when cracked. I think you could just get a spare and use the broken one until output drops significantly to maximize your investment then replace it immediately.
 

Offline Radio Tech

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2015, 03:16:59 pm »
Solar roadway  :-DD

Almost looks like a baseball maybe? Interesting.

Offline DrGeoff

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2015, 03:22:02 pm »
Looks like a misplaced cricket ball or golf ball landed on your roof.

Remember LG = Lucky if it Goes :)
Was it really supposed to do that?
 

Offline ornea

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2015, 03:23:12 pm »
Anything get caught in the gutter?
« Last Edit: December 06, 2015, 03:25:04 pm by ornea »
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2015, 03:23:16 pm »
Stray bullet perhaps? or someone with a slingshot and BB/marble?

No way a marble had enough energy to shatter that.
We don't have a gun culture in Australia, and so hardly anyone has one. So the odds of that are borderline zero.
 

Offline chickenHeadKnob

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2015, 03:24:55 pm »
I live about 400 meters away from the ocean where mud flats get exposed at low tide. Gulls and ravens pick up mollusks and crabs and such during low tide. The gulls fly to about 20 or 30 meters altitude and drop their goodies on rocks right at the beach, to crack them open. The ravens on the other hand bring their stuff to my house and hammer away like a construction crew on my roof. They only do this during the months of late march through to about early july and only in the mornings. This might be because of the pacific ocean mixed tides are low in the mornings  at this time of year and they have young in the nests in nearby trees they need to feed. They only come to my roof!, its infuriating, and I don't know what's special about my house. My shingles are holding up, but I suspect solar panels wouldn't last. Those phu**kers like shiny things and would make use of hard edges as anvils for sure.
 

Offline djQUAN

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2015, 03:26:26 pm »
I wouldn't think a baseball could break the glass since it is tempered and the ball is kind of soft. Although it could happen with sufficient force but from above? Not really sure.

What could do that kind of damage to a tempered glass panel is something hard like a BB, bullet, marble or rock. With a small, very hard pointed object, it doesn't really take a lot of force to break tempered glass.

A small bit of cracked ceramic from a spark plug thrown by hand could easily shatter car windows.
 

Offline Lightages

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2015, 03:27:20 pm »
I think the answer came from the sound half way through the video. An airplane.... Perhaps something fell from an airplane, a bolt, nut, piece of ice....
 

Offline Psi

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2015, 03:56:06 pm »
If its still working maybe just add an extra panel instead of replacing it.
It's going to fail eventually as water gets down the cracks but might as well use the power while its working.
Greek letter 'Psi' (not Pounds per Square Inch)
 

Offline ornea

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2015, 04:02:26 pm »
As a string of panels are in series, the impedance of a single panel can drastically effect the overall performance of the string. If it fails sorted not so bad I think but if it fails with increasing resistance, not so good.
Therefore it is best to replace to maintain peak performance.   
 

Offline djQUAN

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2015, 04:06:27 pm »
PV modules have bypass diodes so when it fails or output drops, the array still works but the total output drops by one module.
 

Offline Klomderper

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2015, 04:09:39 pm »
I would add CCTV cameras to monitor the panels and surrounding areas.
 

Offline NoItAint

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2015, 04:23:24 pm »
Maybe a Ninja rock from a stupid kid sling shot?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninja_rocks

 

Offline rs20

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2015, 04:42:10 pm »
As a string of panels are in series, the impedance of a single panel can drastically effect the overall performance of the string. If it fails sorted not so bad I think but if it fails with increasing resistance, not so good.
Therefore it is best to replace to maintain peak performance.

Right, but wait until performance drops first, right? We don't need to speculate here, he can measure performance and see if/when it starts to deteriorate (which I think it obviously will at some point). If I was him, and I didn't get it replaced on warranty, I'd wait until it starts to actually fail, get the most out of my investment.
 

Offline Cyberdragon

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #15 on: December 06, 2015, 04:48:42 pm »
If someone wanted to bust his panels they probably would have busted them all. It was probably an accident or birds.
*BZZZZZZAAAAAP*
Voltamort strikes again!
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Online Brumby

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #16 on: December 06, 2015, 04:50:20 pm »
Disclaimer: I'm no expert.

My first thought was a cricket ball.  I also wondered about a golf ball - but I reckon it would have to have been a pretty full-on shot to have enough energy to do that damage.  Also, a golf ball might disappear down a downpipe.

Rocks - yes, but since most rocks aren't of rolling shape, you would expect the culprit to be laying around, unless is skipped off somewhere.


Unless someone has experienced this before and can tell us what has (likely) happened, it will remain a mystery.

I suspect the supplier could give you an answer as it would seem they would be most likely to have come across it before.
 

Offline Tomorokoshi

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #17 on: December 06, 2015, 04:57:51 pm »
Actually, I think the pattern is very pretty. Kind of a galactic formation or supernova motif.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #18 on: December 06, 2015, 05:00:37 pm »
You can actually repair that panel, using stuff available in Australia and there is an online video about doing so.



If he can do it, and you use his instructions ( really detailed and pretty simple to follow as well) you should be able to get that panel waterproof again before the rain damages it for a pretty low cost.
 

Offline Slothie

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #19 on: December 06, 2015, 05:18:55 pm »
If you're under a fkight path I'd say a chunk of ice from a plane. If it was a rock, ball etc it would have been in the gutter or on your path. Ice would just melt away.
 

Offline Whales

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #20 on: December 06, 2015, 05:30:30 pm »
Tip if this video sounds strange to you: disable one of your speakers.  Somehow the L and R channels have ended up out of phase.
 

Offline Chris Jones

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #21 on: December 06, 2015, 05:35:44 pm »
It  might have been worth pointing out to viewers that it's probably not a great idea to go poking the broken parts with one's fingers, if the string of panels is all still connected together. Whilst the safety risks of solar electricity are somewhat over-emphasised in Australia when compared to that nice friendly coal electricity, the string voltage could probably still give you a shock, and in many cases the inverter doesn't float the string with respect to the mains so I wouldn't even go poking the broken panel at night.
 

Offline Phoenix

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #22 on: December 06, 2015, 05:42:21 pm »
Out of curiosity does your inverter report the array insulation resistance? I wonder how much this changes with a cracked panel and water ingress...
 

Offline Wytnucls

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #23 on: December 06, 2015, 05:51:05 pm »
Meteorite damage is not uncommon. Certainly more likely than ice or metal bits falling off airplanes. Meteorites are sought after, so any chunk that survived the impact might be worth looking for.

http://www.redding.com/news/unidentified-object-from-sky-destroys-car-in
 

Offline TheSteve

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Re: Home Rooftop Solar Power System Update - Shattered Panel!
« Reply #24 on: December 06, 2015, 06:05:59 pm »
What games do your neighbors usually play in their backyard?
VE7FM
 


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