Author Topic: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?  (Read 6007 times)

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Offline floobydust

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #100 on: February 25, 2019, 08:35:42 am »
I thought a solution would be to put air nozzles and use compressed air to blast off the snow.
So some extra plumbing, not unlike water irrigation systems, pipes running across between the panels with nozzles there.
Could make one whole pipe move up and down and do a "sweep" over the array.
 

Offline george80

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #101 on: February 25, 2019, 09:54:36 am »

I was thinking windscreen Wipers. They wouldn't have to swish back and forth, one  cycle ought to do it if it were done regularly.
The progression of that thought was to sweep the entire array in one go.  Some long travel linear actuators which can be had all over fleabay  at the end of a bar running across all the panels that made a sweep of the whole lot at once and then parked off the end so as not to shadow.  Brushes or something like wiper blades could be fitted to the bar to  remove the snow.

Air Jets or water nozzles could also be fitted alternately.
I don't know what sort of sensor could be used to detect snow but maybe when it was snowing a manual switch could be activated to do a pass every however long.
 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #102 on: February 25, 2019, 10:11:39 am »
Simple wipers are unlikely to work.   Those who drive in snow country know the drill.  Under many conditions the snow quickly piles up at the ends of wiper travel and either fouls the wiper or just falls back over it.  Maybe if you can arrange for the edges of the panels to hang over the edge of the roof and if it doesn't snow quite as much as Red Squirrel is dealing with.
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #103 on: February 25, 2019, 12:11:45 pm »
Sounds like the easiest fix would be to move somewhere where it is warmer.

Here's a list of suggestions - I don't live in snow country and I will have to say none of them sound like they would work at all or even very well.
https://solarchargeddriving.com/2012/01/04/a-dozen-tips-for-getting-snow-off-solar-panels/

Forgive me but compressed air is silly.  You'll be spending more money to compress the air than you would get back from the solar panels.
Not sure how one would rig up a huge wiper on each panel.  Seems to me the freezing rain would get in the gears and ness the system up.

The heat strip would work, but then it takes a lot or energy to heat up and melt that ice.  Highly unlikely it would be worth it.

Probably not practicable, but I will share.  Get a load of manure and place a coil of plastic hose in it.  Manure can get up to 55 - 60 C.  Run the hose up to the panels to melt the ice.  You could use a fan and blow hot air through the pipe or use a pump and salt water.

I know farmers do something similar in cold climates to pre-warm water.
 


 
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #104 on: February 25, 2019, 09:18:00 pm »
Compressed air has crossed my mind too as it would be easy enough to implement with a simple pipe and a bunch of nozzles with their own valves that open one at a time in sequence, but yeah don't think it would work that well.  Could use a car tire compressor to fill the tank, as it won't be as hard on the system as an AC compressor which has a high startup current.   The tank would always be kept up to pressure that way the initial burst of air would not use up battery power.  Could probably use an old propane tank or something.

I'm thinking a brush system of sorts that plows the snow down would be the most effective at least for the snow.    It would then be housed in a compartment on top when not in use so the mechanism is not in the elements.  Won't work for the freezing rain, but  if I can at least remove the snow constantly instead of waiting till I can get around to doing it, it would maybe have a slightly better chance of melting the ice over the months from being exposed.   That, combined with the heater elements might work too.

Once I finish/heat my garage I'll finally have a place to tinker, so I can probably try to come up with something and then install it at some point.
 

Offline george80

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #105 on: February 25, 2019, 10:31:42 pm »

Seems to me you'd need some pretty powerful heat strips to over come the cold energy those panels are having applied to them.

Also seems far from straightforward to come up with a practical soloution for this.
I agree with an earlier comment, Just move somewhere warmer where you don't have this problem!
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #106 on: February 26, 2019, 03:41:00 am »
How would compressseed air remove the ice?   For get the cost of the compressor and the cost to run the compressor for a moment, b/ut wont the air when it comes out of the nozzles make everything even colder making it even more difficult to remove the snow and ice?
 

Offline f4eru

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #107 on: February 26, 2019, 04:58:17 am »
One very simple solution if you are in that niche offgrid case where you can't wait :
use tap water from the garden hose from the ground to unfreeze your panels.
Of course it will first freeze on contact, but after a minute or so, there's no energy left to freeze, and everything melts away.

5 minutes of time needed and some 0.2 euro of water, done. No special equipment or installationn or energy needed.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 05:00:40 am by f4eru »
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #108 on: February 26, 2019, 05:05:28 am »
One very simple solution if you are in that niche offgrid case where you can't wait :
use tap water from the garden hose from the ground to unfreeze your panels.
Of course it will first freeze on contact, but after a minute or so, there's no energy left to freeze, and everything melts away.

5 minutes of time needed and some 0.2 euro of water, done. No special equipment or installationn or energy needed.

Won't that just coat the solar panels with another layer of ice?  I know I have tried that when I visit the snow on the windshield of my car.  All that happens is it partially melts the ice, and then that liquid water freezes and makes things worse.

 
 

Offline floobydust

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #109 on: February 26, 2019, 06:53:37 am »
After more research and a desire to not move somewhere warmer, most people are using a "roof rake" or "snow rake" as it's called.
Automated systems have rollers and a track to move (sideways) across the array, with a soft motorized brush to flap snow/sand around. But not in a direction to clear the buildup...

You could use canopy or awning hardware and make a huge brush move across, from top to bottom. But once you have ice on the panels, I think you are pooched.

I've been applying car wax to solar panels for winter, water beads off and snow doesn't stick. Another option would be to apply rain repellent, it does the same thing. Motorcycle/ race drivers use it on their helmet visor, cuz no wipers. The stuff really works in making the water beads small, something about nucleation sites and surface tension.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 07:01:41 am by floobydust »
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #110 on: February 26, 2019, 06:57:41 am »
After more research and a desire to not move somewhere warmer, most people are using a "roof rake" or "snow rake" as it's called.
Automated systems have rollers and a track to move (sideways) across the array, with a soft motorized brush to flap snow/sand around. But not in a direction to clear the buildup...

You could use canopy or awning hardware and make a huge brush move across, from top to bottom. But once you have ice on the panels, I think you are pooched.

I've been applying car wax to solar panels for winter, water beads off and snow doesn't stick. Another option would be to apply rain repellent, it does the same thing. Motorcycle/ race drivers use it on their helmet visor, cuz no wipers. The stuff really works in making the water beads small, something about nucleation sites and surface tension.


I suggested RainX earlier.  Sounds like you have tried this and it works fairly well?  I use it on my car windscreens every winter.  Works incredibly well.  I know our shower dowers our coated in with it also.  The water and soap scum roll right off. 
 

Offline floobydust

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #111 on: February 26, 2019, 07:20:19 am »
Yes, the stuff works really well for solar panels - if they are polished glass.
I have panels with a rough wrinkle surface finish on the glass and it seems to limit the hydrophobic action. Snow kinda sticks to them.
Any ice buildup is thin if the panel angle is steep and the droplets can run off, so it sublimates quickly. But it rarely rains here during winters.
There has been no degradation for the coatings in sun, they do rub off if you scrub the panels and it's usually smog and silt only to clear off.

It looks like this or a fairly expensive mechanical system that is up against rain/snow, for tilting panels or moving a canopy cover or brush over the panels.
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #112 on: February 26, 2019, 08:09:52 am »
Yes, the stuff works really well for solar panels - if they are polished glass.
I have panels with a rough wrinkle surface finish on the glass and it seems to limit the hydrophobic action. Snow kinda sticks to them.
Any ice buildup is thin if the panel angle is steep and the droplets can run off, so it sublimates quickly. But it rarely rains here during winters.
There has been no degradation for the coatings in sun, they do rub off if you scrub the panels and it's usually smog and silt only to clear off.

It looks like this or a fairly expensive mechanical system that is up against rain/snow, for tilting panels or moving a canopy cover or brush over the panels.

Thanks for sharing.

It's my understanding these chemicals at the microscopic level fill in the "pits" in the surface of the glass to make a smooth surface which makes it so water/snow has a much harder time "sticking" to it.  I know when I drive in the rain I don't use my windshield wipers as much.
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #113 on: February 26, 2019, 10:47:20 am »
One very simple solution if you are in that niche offgrid case where you can't wait :
use tap water from the garden hose from the ground to unfreeze your panels.
Of course it will first freeze on contact, but after a minute or so, there's no energy left to freeze, and everything melts away.

5 minutes of time needed and some 0.2 euro of water, done. No special equipment or installationn or energy needed.

Won't that just coat the solar panels with another layer of ice?  I know I have tried that when I visit the snow on the windshield of my car.  All that happens is it partially melts the ice, and then that liquid water freezes and makes things worse.

Yeah I would not want to do that it's just going to coat everything with dry ice.  It's essentially just creating my own freezing rain.  Would also need a way to get the water up there.  Don't want to turn on the hose at this time of year so I'd need to try to get a ladder up there and bring buckets.  Logisticly it's not really feasible. 

The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow. 
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #114 on: February 26, 2019, 09:43:51 pm »
One very simple solution if you are in that niche offgrid case where you can't wait :
use tap water from the garden hose from the ground to unfreeze your panels.
Of course it will first freeze on contact, but after a minute or so, there's no energy left to freeze, and everything melts away.

5 minutes of time needed and some 0.2 euro of water, done. No special equipment or installationn or energy needed.

Won't that just coat the solar panels with another layer of ice?  I know I have tried that when I visit the snow on the windshield of my car.  All that happens is it partially melts the ice, and then that liquid water freezes and makes things worse.

Yeah I would not want to do that it's just going to coat everything with dry ice.  It's essentially just creating my own freezing rain.  Would also need a way to get the water up there.  Don't want to turn on the hose at this time of year so I'd need to try to get a ladder up there and bring buckets.  Logisticly it's not really feasible. 

The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow.

I would guess you are going to use some gears.  Won”t ice jam the gears?
 

Offline george80

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #115 on: February 27, 2019, 12:03:44 am »
The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow.

Exactly what I suggested.

No need to specifically use gears.
The brush trolley could be attached to a cable and pulled along by that with a motor and Pulleys. Ice would easy be broken off by flexing of the cable and pressure.  Cheap winch in an endless cable loop would work fine.

Depending if you were going to go from top to bottom or left to right you could also use pneumatic Cylinders.  No need for a compressor, use LPG Gas. Would last an eternity and to preempt the inevitable, if you are going to talk about safety or explosions, you don't know what you are talking about so please don''t feel any need to remove all doubt of that. One could also use something like an old refrigerator compressor. may not be fast, not that you'd need it to be but the power draw would be low. Ro save power put a reversing valve in the system so the wiper is returned to 50% extension by the reversal of the pressure.

Electric Linear actuators are also an option and are usualy available is a sealed configuration so as to prevent ingress of dirt and water. If returned to the parked, start position, ice would not be a problem.  These things are available in hundreds of pounds force rating  so ice unless inches thick would not pose a problem.

What about a cover for the panels at night to stop buildup when not being used?
Cover is pulled  down/ unrolled like a pool blanket say and then rewound taking snow  and Ice with it which is dumped off the bending edge as the cover is rolled up. In bad weather thought the day when panels are doing nothing anyway, could be recovered till the sun comes out.

Maybe a system with rollers at each end could be used with clear plastic like restaurants use for outdoor areas which is thick and tough.  Just roll the plastic back and forth. Any snow or Ice will be moved off the panels and dumped off as the panel rolls.  Clear areas would be exposed like used on camera lenses on racecars and so on.  When the plastic is rolled back, the snow is taken with it and falls off the rolling edge and returns the clear first half of the roll again over the panels.

 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #116 on: February 27, 2019, 05:34:01 am »
The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow.

Exactly what I suggested.

No need to specifically use gears.
The brush trolley could be attached to a cable and pulled along by that with a motor and Pulleys. Ice would easy be broken off by flexing of the cable and pressure.  Cheap winch in an endless cable loop would work fine.

Depending if you were going to go from top to bottom or left to right you could also use pneumatic Cylinders.  No need for a compressor, use LPG Gas. Would last an eternity and to preempt the inevitable, if you are going to talk about safety or explosions, you don't know what you are talking about so please don''t feel any need to remove all doubt of that. One could also use something like an old refrigerator compressor. may not be fast, not that you'd need it to be but the power draw would be low. Ro save power put a reversing valve in the system so the wiper is returned to 50% extension by the reversal of the pressure.

Electric Linear actuators are also an option and are usualy available is a sealed configuration so as to prevent ingress of dirt and water. If returned to the parked, start position, ice would not be a problem.  These things are available in hundreds of pounds force rating  so ice unless inches thick would not pose a problem.

What about a cover for the panels at night to stop buildup when not being used?
Cover is pulled  down/ unrolled like a pool blanket say and then rewound taking snow  and Ice with it which is dumped off the bending edge as the cover is rolled up. In bad weather thought the day when panels are doing nothing anyway, could be recovered till the sun comes out.

Maybe a system with rollers at each end could be used with clear plastic like restaurants use for outdoor areas which is thick and tough.  Just roll the plastic back and forth. Any snow or Ice will be moved off the panels and dumped off as the panel rolls.  Clear areas would be exposed like used on camera lenses on racecars and so on.  When the plastic is rolled back, the snow is taken with it and falls off the rolling edge and returns the clear first half of the roll again over the panels.

george80 your reply gave me an idea.  Tell me if you think this would work.  His issue is freezing rain and ice build up on the panels correct?  What if he were to string a series of cables loosely across the panels.  When the ice form pull the cables tight to break the ice.

 


 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #117 on: February 27, 2019, 05:39:44 am »
The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow.

Exactly what I suggested.

No need to specifically use gears.
The brush trolley could be attached to a cable and pulled along by that with a motor and Pulleys. Ice would easy be broken off by flexing of the cable and pressure.  Cheap winch in an endless cable loop would work fine.

Depending if you were going to go from top to bottom or left to right you could also use pneumatic Cylinders.  No need for a compressor, use LPG Gas. Would last an eternity and to preempt the inevitable, if you are going to talk about safety or explosions, you don't know what you are talking about so please don''t feel any need to remove all doubt of that. One could also use something like an old refrigerator compressor. may not be fast, not that you'd need it to be but the power draw would be low. Ro save power put a reversing valve in the system so the wiper is returned to 50% extension by the reversal of the pressure.

Electric Linear actuators are also an option and are usualy available is a sealed configuration so as to prevent ingress of dirt and water. If returned to the parked, start position, ice would not be a problem.  These things are available in hundreds of pounds force rating  so ice unless inches thick would not pose a problem.

What about a cover for the panels at night to stop buildup when not being used?
Cover is pulled  down/ unrolled like a pool blanket say and then rewound taking snow  and Ice with it which is dumped off the bending edge as the cover is rolled up. In bad weather thought the day when panels are doing nothing anyway, could be recovered till the sun comes out.

Maybe a system with rollers at each end could be used with clear plastic like restaurants use for outdoor areas which is thick and tough.  Just roll the plastic back and forth. Any snow or Ice will be moved off the panels and dumped off as the panel rolls.  Clear areas would be exposed like used on camera lenses on racecars and so on.  When the plastic is rolled back, the snow is taken with it and falls off the rolling edge and returns the clear first half of the roll again over the panels.

While stipulating that safety may not be an issue I see two problems with LPG.  First, I don't see a practical way to recover the LPG so this is venting into the atmosphere.  For someone who is trying to be green and reduce greenhouse gas emission this may not be ideal.  Also at the temperatures that often exist when snow is an issue the working pressure of the LPG will be pretty low.  Depending on the purity of the propane it could approach zero.  In any case large area cylinders will be required.
 

Offline DougSpindler

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #118 on: February 27, 2019, 05:51:34 am »
The rolling track brush system sounds interesting, it's kinda what I have in mind for the snow.

Exactly what I suggested.

No need to specifically use gears.
The brush trolley could be attached to a cable and pulled along by that with a motor and Pulleys. Ice would easy be broken off by flexing of the cable and pressure.  Cheap winch in an endless cable loop would work fine.

Depending if you were going to go from top to bottom or left to right you could also use pneumatic Cylinders.  No need for a compressor, use LPG Gas. Would last an eternity and to preempt the inevitable, if you are going to talk about safety or explosions, you don't know what you are talking about so please don''t feel any need to remove all doubt of that. One could also use something like an old refrigerator compressor. may not be fast, not that you'd need it to be but the power draw would be low. Ro save power put a reversing valve in the system so the wiper is returned to 50% extension by the reversal of the pressure.

Electric Linear actuators are also an option and are usualy available is a sealed configuration so as to prevent ingress of dirt and water. If returned to the parked, start position, ice would not be a problem.  These things are available in hundreds of pounds force rating  so ice unless inches thick would not pose a problem.

What about a cover for the panels at night to stop buildup when not being used?
Cover is pulled  down/ unrolled like a pool blanket say and then rewound taking snow  and Ice with it which is dumped off the bending edge as the cover is rolled up. In bad weather thought the day when panels are doing nothing anyway, could be recovered till the sun comes out.

Maybe a system with rollers at each end could be used with clear plastic like restaurants use for outdoor areas which is thick and tough.  Just roll the plastic back and forth. Any snow or Ice will be moved off the panels and dumped off as the panel rolls.  Clear areas would be exposed like used on camera lenses on racecars and so on.  When the plastic is rolled back, the snow is taken with it and falls off the rolling edge and returns the clear first half of the roll again over the panels.

While stipulating that safety may not be an issue I see two problems with LPG.  First, I don't see a practical way to recover the LPG so this is venting into the atmosphere.  For someone who is trying to be green and reduce greenhouse gas emission this may not be ideal.  Also at the temperatures that often exist when snow is an issue the working pressure of the LPG will be pretty low.  Depending on the purity of the propane it could approach zero.  In any case large area cylinders will be required.

Or add an ignitor and direct the flame towards the the ice.
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #119 on: February 27, 2019, 07:06:22 am »
Using fossil fuel would kinda defeat the purpose. Could just use a gas generator to make power in first place and forget about the panels altogether.  :-DD

And yea any design with moving parts I'd have to consider how the mechanism works.  I'm thinking there would be a "box" on top of the panels where the brush is kept, and then it only comes out to clear the snow.  It could even be made to be heavy, and have wheels, so it just rides on top of the panels, it would be mostly free.  Less gears/belts etc, the less chance of something jamming up.  This won't deal with the actual freezing rain issue though, but make it easier to keep them clear in first place.   If it rains on bare panels, it's not as bad as if there's snow and it rains on top of that snow, which I think is what happened here. It then creates a crust.   If it rains on the bare panels then I would get a more transparent sheet of ice so less light would be blocked and they would just keep working as normal I would think.  So I'm starting to think, the key may be to simply find a more automated way to deal with the snow, and forget about the freezing rain. Though I could still do the nichrome wire idea in addition to the brushes too.
 

Offline george80

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #120 on: February 27, 2019, 09:40:29 am »
Using fossil fuel would kinda defeat the purpose. Could just use a gas generator to make power in first place and forget about the panels altogether.  :-DD

Well if you could make as much power with the tiny bit of gas the cylinders would use with a generator as what the clean panels would give you, you should share your method with the rest of the world and solve the energy Crisis and become a billionaire.  ::)
 
You could afford to move somewhere warm then where you didn't have the problem in the first place.   :palm:
 

Offline floobydust

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #121 on: February 28, 2019, 10:49:29 am »
It was -28ºC the other night and I imagine Aussies would love that right now  :)  Every year it kills off the snakes, mosquitos, cockroaches, spiders and every bug. That's why we don't move to warmer climates, everything is poisonous there.
The odd chinook with freezing rain happens once or twice a year.

Solar panels output higher voltage when cold, their power output goes up around +4 to +5% per 10ºC drop. It's quite a welcome boost in cold weather, to get almost 25% more out of your panels.
 

Offline george80

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #122 on: February 28, 2019, 12:57:23 pm »
It was -28ºC the other night and I imagine Aussies would love that right now  :)

Errr, NO!
Thank you very much for your kind and generous offer but you can keep your cold hell and we'll stick with our Hades thanks all the same!   ;D
I just came in for a bite of lunch after ploughing a bit of garden to put in the winter crops.  Soaking wet with perspiration as usual when I do anything out in the sun. Half way through my 3rd 500ml glass of water.  Another one and I should be right.

Quote
Every year it kills off the snakes, mosquitos, cockroaches, spiders and every bug. That's why we don't move to warmer climates, everything is poisonous there.

We had some -5's here last year and that Killed off half the plants in the garden, the lawn, some tress and a bunch of other vegetation.
I just finished building an oil burning yard heater for this winter. Going to put it at one end of the veg/ ornamental garden with a fan and blow the heat around to keep the damn frost away.

Unfortunately don't do much to rid us of snakes and the like, they just Hibernate till summer and then come out again.  We have 8 of the top 10 worlds deadliest here.  And I mean RIGHT here.  I was in one of the most Noted reptile parks lasy year and spoke to this going after his presentation who is supposed to be the leading authority on snakes in Oz. Was asking him some questions and he asked where we live. The place is a bit on the fringe of the city ( as in sydney 3500Km away from where we were) and as soon as I told him he lit up and said Oh yeah, I go there all the time! and started telling us about local landmarks.

I asked if he had family here, he said no, I go there to catch and study the Brown snakes and others. There are higher concentrations of deadly snakes where you are than anywhere else in the country, we always get as many specimens as we want from there, most of our exhibits came from your area!

He was excited, Me, not so much!  :scared:  had only been here about 6 Months then, not what I would rate as the most endearing feature of the area.  He told me about the black snake population expanding here. I said great in a sarcastic tone.  He said it is for you really. I said how you figure that? He said Black is number 8 on the poisonous list. They keep away the Brows that are THE most deadly in the world. Guess which one you are better off getting Bitten by?  I asked if it was my goldfish but while technically correct, not in the context of snakes.

Didn't see any snakes myself this summer but talking to the postman whom I get on well with, He reckoned Dogs were not his main worry and he had 3 near misses this season... so far.
We do get Mosquitos all year round here which is a pain but thankfully everything else goes away till spring or so.

Quote
Solar panels output higher voltage when cold, their power output goes up around +4 to +5% per 10ºC drop. It's quite a welcome boost in cold weather, to get almost 25% more out of your panels.

While that may be true, I think it's bit of a catch 22. When it's hot it's because the suns radiation is strongest. While the efficiency of the panels may drop, the brute force of the sun beating down on them always seems to give me very good output on hot days. The best days however are when there is a tiny biot of cloud which amplifies the radiation with what is called cloud edge effect. That can really send the things into overdrive.

I also think panel heat rating is bit of a joke. the ones I have all seem to be rated to 40oC before they drop off. You can't have them in the sun at all here before they are too damn hot to touch and I know for me that's well past 50oC .  In summer, I wouldn't even try and have no doubt they could hit 100. I was going to try and film cooking on them this summer but who wants to go out in the sun on a 40o day?

I was wondering how one would go building a giant parabola out of snow  so the panels could be stood up and work on the reflection of the sun. I have read a few accounts of people getting unreal outputs from their panels in teh snow being a combination of the cold and the reflected light.
If a mound of snow was pushed up in the right direction and angle, maybe it could be used to advantage to reflect more light onto the panels and keep them at an angle that kept the snow off the fronts anyway.  Certainly wouldn't be a lack of Building materials.

Snow on the back would be a good thing not that they would need any cooling.
 

Offline Silver_Pharaoh

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #123 on: February 28, 2019, 01:04:28 pm »
It's not a solar panel, but I always used a Super Soaker water gun filled with hot water to melt snow and ice of my satellite dish  :)

I know it's not the greatest idea but maybe a misting system with washer fluid or sugar water?

 

Offline apis

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Re: How do you deal with freezing rain and solar panels?
« Reply #124 on: February 28, 2019, 07:03:45 pm »
Quote
This is a tad on the extreme side as we have not had this much snow in at least 10 years though.
Thats Globull warming at work!!   ::)
Given the rolling eyes smiley I assume you were making an ironic impression of a global warming denier.  :D

But just for the record: an increase in atmospheric temperature means the air can absorb more water vapour which in turn leads to a more intensive water cycle: i.e. more rain and snow (in some places, while it gets dryer in other places). So yes, that could quite possibly be global warming at work, but it's hard to tell from a single data point since there is so much variance, on average there is an increase in precipitation though.
 


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