Solar panels and radio


Bob Motyl KK6KMU
 

I'm in process looking at having electrical solar panels installed at my QTH.  My research has revealed that solar panels create RFI in the armature band.  It appears that it up to the owner to mitigate the noise.  I see Palomar Engineering has some mitigation products but wanted to see if anyone operates with solar on their QTH,  I am looking at solar panels with micro inverters if that helps.  All comments are welcomed.
--
Bob  KK6KMU  #2484


 

Bob,
Dx Engineering has a spot on their website called "Ask a question" technical questions.  Submit a question and if they don't sell anything to help you they usually point you in a direction to get answers.  I've used this several times and they were pretty quick to give me an answer.

John
KC3FL


Bob Motyl KK6KMU
 

John,

I took your suggestion and this is the answer I got.  Thought I'd share it with the group.

Question:  Are there any products that mitigate the RFI noise caused by solar panels? Specifically panels with micro inverters. I have found some products but nothing to document the effectiveness is referenced. 


Answer:  
Hello,

 

Great question - unfortunately there are so many variations on solar controllers out there, there is no one-size fits all solution. 

 

Your best bet is to contact the company that installed the system and complain about the RF interference - they may have a specific kit that can be installed.

 

The ARRL is actively working on complaints and with solar manufacturers about this RFI problem.

 

A good resource of info is the RFI Reflector http://lists.contesting.com/archives//html/RFI/

 

Good luck & 73,

 

Tom, KB8UUZ

DX Engineering


Bob
KK6kmu


K8TOM
 

Bob,

We had a 9.6 KW  stand-alone (not rooftop) tilting solar array installed in 2017 and advised the installer/contractor about RFI.  Consequently he chose micro-inverters made by Blue Frog. 

I saw no difference in my bands before and after turning on the array, which easily powers my house and sells power back to the utility, reducing my monthly bills.

Tom
K8TOM
815


Bob Motyl KK6KMU
 

Tom,

Thanks for your input.  My research is showing me that distance away from the solar panels does reduce the noise.  Ferrite beads and toroid's have minimal affect mitigating RFI.  Until I find some test data I skeptical on ferrite effectiveness.  I'm still researching.

Bob
KK6KMU 


Eric KG6MZS
 

The subject reminds me of an old joke among guitarists:

A guitarist has a nightmare.  In his nightmare he dies and his wife sells his guitars for what he told her he paid for them.

:)

Might work for some hams too.

A little levity in an otherwise morbid subject

73 Eric, KG6MZS