After buying a beautiful piece of land in Aragon on which to build their family home, Graham and Lanetta approached Clear Sky Solar to design and install a system robust enough to power their new home and a camping area at the other end of the finca.
Clear Sky Solar’s proposal was to provide 15 panels mounted on a Wagner ground mount system. This array would feed into an Outback FM80 charge controller, charging a large lead-acid battery. The AC power would be provided by an Outback Radian 7kW inverter, and distribution would be provided via buried steel armoured cable to the camping area, as well as eventually to the site of the house during its construction.
All of the Outback equipment would be linked in to the Mate3s and interfaced with OpticsRE for remote monitoring. The client didn’t yet have permanent internet set-up on the land, so we advised a 4G router to provide remote monitoring capability as well as temporary internet.
The site slopes down from the top of a hill – an ideal spot for year-round sun just above the proposed house site. Clear Sky Solar first arranged a local driver & Bobcat to complete the groundworks, leveling off the terrace to site the ground mounted solar array and new power shed.
Once the Bobcat had prepared the trenches for the ground mount, a concrete lorry filled the trenches with several tons of concrete ballast as a foundation for the supporting legs of the frame. A full site-specific wind loading calculation was completed by the manufacturer, Wagner Solar in Germany. Wind loading calculations are hugely important in a project like this – with a 26 sqm ‘sail’ sitting several metres up into the air on an exposed mountainside, proper engineering calculations are vital and give necessary reassurance.
Following the siting of the ground mount, we helped source a local builder to build a 3m x 2m power shed – ventilated and insulated to safely house the solar equipment, as well as a small back-up generator.
Once the power shed was in and the ground mount assembled, the Outback equipment was fitted in the power shed, and AC distribution to the camping area was completed- digging in the cable across tracks and terraces, 100m further down the hill.
The clients have been living happily with the solar system for 6 months now, including running an electric heater through some of the colder Teruel nights, and using induction plates to cook on their fantastic new outside kitchen.
- 15 x 280W UK Sol panels (5 strings)
- Wagner Flex Four ground mount
- Outback FM80 charge controller
- Outback Radian 7kW inverter
- Outback Hub & Mate3s, controlling OpticsRE
- Steel Wire Armoured cable
- 2 x AC distribution consumer units
- 24 x 1000Ah 2v lead-acid cells
Simon from Clear Sky Solar was highly recommended to us by a neighbour. After a few meetings to determine our needs Simon sent us a very detailed quotation and went through everything step by step. We decided on a 7kw Outback System for our house & ‘temporary camp’ while we wait for the house to be built. The work was carried out quickly and efficiently and we can safely say that the system has been working a dream for us so far with absolutely no hiccups or even diminished power despite cloudy days & rain :-).
Following installation Simon has been there to answer any questions and even monitor our system remotely to ensure everything was running smoothly. We can’t recommend Simon from Clear Sky enough. He put our minds at ease on the technical side and always maintained a friendly & professional approach. This is undoubtedly the best investment we will make for our off-grid home.
– Graham Lord