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01-09-2008, 03:09 PM   #1
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Pentax DSLRS; Solar power for your system...continuation

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Well, I have been doing a lot of reading, testing, and hands-on experimenting this past week. I know now that it is indeed possible to power a small photography home studio (1000 to 1500 watts) and be off the grid most of the time. However, it is a little too costly to have a solar system supplying power twenty four hours per day via battery stored power. The amount of batteries required to continue supplying the power after sunset or during rainy days, is too expensive. At the present time, I only have 2 solar panels, one 12v deep cycle battery, one solar charge controller and a 400 watt inverter. That is a good enough system to power my laptop, printer, and external larger monitor. Of course it has all the capabilities to recharge any camera batteries, cell phones, iPod, etc. My current backup battery ($153.00 at Costco) stores enough power to keep me going about 1 to 2 hours after the Solar Panels stop functioning. In order to keep my equipment from damages, I installed an APC Surge protector/battery back-up. If the power gets dangerously low, the APC Uninterrupted Power Supply takes over, and within itís 5 to 10 minutes reserve and software, securely shut down my system and save the files so that nothing will be lost. Keep in mind that the laptop also has its own battery, which can add another hour or so to the system. I still prefer using my Desktop when working with Photoshop. Itís a much faster system. I suppose I could purchase a better laptop, and may thatís the answer.

In the months to come, I will acquire a regular automobile alternator, and fabricate a wind powered source with it for additional DC 12v input to the system. This will compensate for night and of course when itís raining, and providing itís windy. I live in the desert and like clockwork; it gets windy every afternoon around 1:00 P.M. through the next morning. It rains very seldom, so it should work great in this area. .Once both systems are in place, adding additional Solar Panels will eventually be enough to power my complete Desktop system and maybe more.

My total cost for the current system is about $450.00. It will take a long time to save enough on my electric bill to justify the system monetarily wise, but ecologically wise, Iím doing my small effort.

Your comments, suggestions are greatly needed and appreciated.

Yvon Bourque


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