off-grid solar and wind power specialists

Marine Solar Panels & Wind Generators

Marine solar pv panels installed on boat - Sunware

Solar Panels & Wind Generators For Boats

Marine solar pv panels and small wind generators are ideal for battery charging aboard yachts and boats. Solar pv & wind power are well established in the marine market, having been proven over many years as reliable sources of power.

With the constant increase of on-board electronics, marine solar pv & wind power systems allow use of autopilots, communications, fridges, pumps and lighting without having to run the engine or a generator. Not only does this mean more peace & quiet and less fuel costs, it also means less dependence on expensive, serviced marina berths.

At the EDC we can custom design a solar panel kit or a complete solar power system to meet your exact requirements. We supply a range of marinised wind generators, solar pv panels, solar controllers and deep cycle batteries all suited to a harsh marine environment.

Leading Edge LE300 marine wind generator

Marine Solar PV Panels

Most solar pv panels are not warrantied for marine use, including those from Kyocera which are very popular on boats. The few pv modules that are warrantied for marine use have fairly short warranties.

As a result of these warranty issues, our technicians now offer to marinise one of our high quality 100W rigid solar pv modules, and we will warranty the solar pv module for 3 years in a marine environment.

Our specially marinized solar panels have the following features :

  • Small footprint : 100W Panel = 1200x550x35mm, 50W Panel = 630x550x35mm
  • Anodised aluminium frame.
  • High efficiency mono crystalline cells.
  • Fully potted junction box, fitted with custom lengths of tinned solar cables. This eliminates cable joins or connectors in exposed locations, and the potted junction box protects the sensitive connections inside.
  • Unique 3 year marine warranty. 10 year standard warranty.
We also supply semi-flexible and flexible solar pv modules, designed for marine use.

For more details regarding our specially marinized solar panels - please contact us on +44 (0)1502 589407
We are currently preparing data sheets and updating our web store page.

Marinised Solar PV Controllers

Some solar pv controller manufacturers offer fully potted controllers which are likely to survive longer in a marine environment. Other manufacturers use a special 'conformal' coating on the electronics to protect them.

Marine Wind Generators

Many small wind turbines are designed specifically for the marine market. We recommend the two industry leading brands, i.e. Leading Edge & Marlec/Rutland.

The Leading Edge LE300 turbine in particular has proven itself in a wide range of harsh environments, and the manufacturers have recently extended the warranty to 5 years.
  • Marlec Rutland 504 - popular small marine wind turbine with a distinctive safety ring - 60W max.
  • Marlec Rutland 913 - probably the most popular small marine wind generator in the world - 300W max.
We also supply a range of wind generator controllers, or regulators.

LE300 marine wind turbine installed on yacht

'Marine' Deep Cycle Batteries

Marine power systems mostly depend on good quality batteries. All batteries are not the same and some so-called leisure or marine batteries are nothing more than a slightly heavier duty starting battery. Most of these batteries will complete up to about 200 to 300 complete discharge cycles.

Conversely, a top quality deep cycle battery will be able to complete perhaps 1000 to 1200 complete discharge cycles before needing replacement. Gel batteries are also more suited to rough conditions due to immobilised electrolyte, and most are non-gassing in normal use.
  • Fiamm SMG Solar OPzV Range - excellent value long life 2v gel cells, designed for heavy duty industrial applications - 240Ah to 3600Ah. Exclusive 5 year warranty.

Battery Status Display

An accurate battery status display is the key to understanding exactly what's happening with your boat's power system. The Victron battery monitors are some of our most popular for marine applications.
  • Victron BMV 600 & 602 - modern digital battery status monitors, designed for single or twin battery banks.

DC to AC Inverters

With many onboard electrical luxuries now requiring some form of AC or mains supply, a decent inverter makes life very simple. Victron supply a proven range of marine inverters and inverter chargers.

Custom Designed Marine Power Kits

Our system design engineers can design a marine power system to your exact criteria. We are also happy to work from an early stage with your boatbuilders or marine engineers.

When contacting us please include details such as available installation space for the solar pv modules, planned cruising area, number of battery banks and average daily power requirements. Please see the information section of our site for guidance on how to establish your average daily energy needs.

LE300 marine wind turbine installed on narrowboat

Charging Twin Battery Banks

As many boats have twin battery banks, one of the first things we recommend is to install a high quality automatic two-way split charge relay. This allows the battery banks to charge as one, and discharge separately.

The latest Victron Cyrix 'intelligent' relay is a zero loss, heavy duty, cost effective solution which will operate from any charging source, connected to either battery bank. A simple switch allows the Victron Cyrix to 'emergency' parallel the battery banks in case the starter battery should be faulty.

Alternatively, we supply solar charge controllers such as the Sunsaver Duo, which are specifically designed to charge two battery banks from one solar array.

The Benefits Of Efficiency Aboard

Boats & yachts can offer significant opportunities to improve efficiency. In turn, this reduces the load on the battery bank, which is easier and less costly than generating more power. Therefore, efficiency improvements are normally the first stage of any power system upgrades.

Through careful choice of the devices to be powered, dramatic savings can be made in the average daily energy demand.

We recommend using high efficiency appliances such as LCD TV's, T-Class Stereo Amplifiers and trying to minimise the use of AC power inverters with the use of DC power.

twin aerogen marine wind generators fitted to yacht

Efficient lighting technologies such as ultra bright LED and 12v CFL lights can make substantial reductions to the lighting load. Modern LED navigation lights also make a big difference as they can often run for long hours on a night passage.

On many older boats, halogen mini-spot lights are used for internal lighting. These can use from 5 to 50 watts of power. In most situations, clients have been able to replace these bulbs with LED clusters with a power draw of 1.5W to 3W.

That adds up to a huge saving in power. For the same amount of energy, the LEDs will provide approximately 15 hrs of light, compared to 1 hour of light using standard halogen bulbs.

A high efficiency power strategy, in turn, requires a far smaller battery bank, less bulky solar panels, smaller wind turbines, smaller cables, and far less total system weight.

Aerogen wind generator installed on boat

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