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Mad Scientist

Solar powered LEDs for sign use

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Curious if anyone has heard of any developments in reliable solar power for sign use.   Seems there are still plenty of signs without a dedicated underground feed to power up LED power supplies or the budget to run such a line.  Any info towards sign related products in this area would be appreciated.   

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I know that Tubeliite  sign supply came here to the shop and our show and had a pretty cool system. It was scalable to meet electric load requirement.  We have not used one yet but it would have been pretty cool.

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I also have been looking into this for a couple of projects in remote locations. I found this site,http://www.signlightingworld.com/slw-led-solar-systems-with-24hr-reserve/

I have not tried it personally, the 1 year warranty has me a little hesitant for the price.  Still looking and if I find anything I will pass it on. 

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I am working with this company and they can help in your Solar needs.  Tell her Bruce sent you.

 Liz Karschner-Slone
Sales & Marketing

SEPCO – Solar Electric Power Company
1521 SE Palm Court, Stuart, FL 34994
Ph: 772-220-6615

Check us out on: WebFacebook - Twitter - Blog  

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https://www.solarelectricsupply.com/

We worked with these guys on a system for an internally illuminated ID Sign cabinet.  Sign was located on a corner lot and was quite away from the property and existing power.  Went up in 2013 and was still working just fine until someone decided to break into the NEMA enclosure and steal the battery a couple weeks ago lol.  They can scale systems to work with the amount of power you need.  High quality stuff so it was expensive.  I believe that sign was drawing around 40-45 watts.

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I've used Morningstar solar lighting controllers on a couple of signs (one even a neon sign).  They combine a solar charge-controller and day/night detection into one unit with many settings to play with.  They use the actual solar cell itself to detect day/night.  No photo cell needed.

I can't imagine why any LED modules would be "solar ready".  Any of them will work and they main requirement is a DC-input LED supply (do not power LED's directly from the battery circuit.)  The DC-DC power supply will maintain full voltage and current with a range of input voltages.  Otherwise your LED's will dim as the battery discharges and probably fry when the charger kicks in with higher voltage.

The hardest part about solar is getting you panel and battery specs correct.  Most people severely OVERestimate how much sun they will get and the amp-hours of battery needed for the desired run-time.  Educate your customer that batteries WILL need changing periodically... perhaps even yearly with a daily charge-discharge cycle.  They are a "consumable. But done correctly it is a viable option when no power is available.

Edited by Erik Sine
just cuz

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Don't forget to use constant current LED modules like our Reckless .....that way when the voltage drops even to 10 volts the brightness is the same as 12 volts.....and their all the same brightness from the first module on the string to the last.....just saying...:fnd(1):

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52 minutes ago, megavolt512 said:

"Most people severely underestimate how much sun they will get and the amp-hours of battery needed for the desired run-time."

sorry, meant OVERESTIMATE

 

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Over 20 years ago I designed a solar panel powered sign when I worked at Superior Electrical Advertising as a designer. It was too far ahead of its time and was not sold.

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My company Ascent Green energy develop solar and wind solutions aspecially for the sign industry,

Our solar controller connected to the Internet through cell our server look at the forecast and change the light output to preserve energy ( we guarantee year-round light output, even in the harsh winter environment,)

We also develop, very high efficient LED light bars designed to work together with our controller.

We have the knowledge and the experience

More information AscentGreenEnergy.com

Dov Rom

VP Engineering

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Thank you to everyone for your time, it is much appreciated.  That is why I value this site.

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