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Grid-tie Master Mode

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(@cali-carlos)
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You've convinced me @sid-genetry-solar I just placed my order!


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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We'll do our best to make it one of the best decisions you've made 😉.

Just keep in mind that there'll probably be some firmware work...but we should be able to get it working as you need.


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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Posted by: @sid-genetry-solar
Just keep in mind that there'll probably be some firmware work...but we should be able to get it working as you need.

Yes completely understandable. I'm in no big rush.


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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Got my 6k safe and sound today! Will hopefully get it on the wall and hooked up this week.

<a class="ipsAttachLink ipsAttachLink_image" href="/monthly_2023_06/20230612_183055.jpg.cf65d0c78ad51b06ed56d2678045caa5.jpg" data-fileid="2323" data-fileext="jpg" rel=""><img class="ipsImage ipsImage_thumbnailed" data-fileid="2323" data-ratio="133.45" width="562" alt="20230612_183055.thumb.jpg.77c10e8b6801cd0d55b19f6f7fa2947b.jpg" data-src="/monthly_2023_06/20230612_183055.thumb.jpg.77c10e8b6801cd0d55b19f6f7fa2947b.jpg" src="/applications/core/interface/js/spacer.png" />

<a contenteditable="false" data-ipshover="" data-ipshover-target="/profile/2-sid-genetry-solar/?do=hovercard" data-mentionid="2" href="/profile/2-sid-genetry-solar/" rel="">@Sid Genetry Solar Hope you had a great vacation, I'm sure you're swamped now that you're back. No rush from me to get the Grid Tied Master Mode setup, just let me know when you're ready to work on it.  

If I want/need to use it in the meantime I assume it would work just fine and even use the excess solar to charge my bank until the dc over voltage value and shut down the inverter? If so would that shut down requre a manual reset or would it automatically restart after a given amount of time? I have SLA batteries so I'm thinking 60v should be safe.


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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On 6/12/2023 at 9:55 PM, Cali Carlos said:

If I want/need to use it in the meantime I assume it would work just fine and even use the excess solar to charge my bank until the dc over voltage value and shut down the inverter? If so would that shut down requre a manual reset or would it automatically restart after a given amount of time? I have SLA batteries so I'm thinking 60v should be safe.

So I did some GTM-functionality work with another customer, and found that I'd never finished it before--there was no battery voltage limit in the GTM regulation functionality.  Which explained why BMS trips resulting from GTI back-charge were causing serious issues.

That has been fixed in 1.2r2 and newer.

As long as the inverter shuts down due to overvoltage (OVP), there shouldn't be any risk of back-charging via GTIs.  The risk was when battery BMS's would trip BEFORE the inverter's OVP setting, resultantly throwing the inverter off a cliff.  (Like removing a load from a diesel engine that's in runaway; GTIs are effectively runaway diesels...if they aren't loaded down, things go haywire very quickly.)

 

I did some work with a customer on the GTI functionality--and after reconfiguring the GTI grid profiles to something usable, it seemed to be working OK.  (Some sort of Tesla grid profile?  With a normal "grid" profile, there was a lot of oscillation/AC flickering from the GTIs.) 
Hardest part is trying to figure out logistics of how the inverter knows what charge rules to apply, especially when loads and clouds cause the GS inverter to "lose sight" of the GTIs (i.e. more load than the GTIs are producing, so the output current readout goes positive again.)  Obviously, having been out of the country for a bit, I've got a lot of catch-up work to do (plus working a side job at the moment).


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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2 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

As long as the inverter shuts down due to overvoltage (OVP), there shouldn't be any risk of back-charging via GTIs.  The risk was when battery BMS's would trip BEFORE the inverter's OVP setting

I have the OVP set to 60 and don't have a BMS so that wouldn't be an issue.

2 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

Obviously, having been out of the country for a bit, I've got a lot of catch-up work to do (plus working a side job at the moment).

My system is basically just for backup so I'm not much in a hurry to getting it to run perfectly. 

Do I run the inverter in Normal Mode? I didn't see any grid tie options? Planning on doing a test run this weekend.


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

Do I run the inverter in Normal Mode? I didn't see any grid tie options? Planning on doing a test run this weekend.

Yes.  "GTM" functionality automatically activates when the inverter "sees" negative output amperage (you'll see the Status line go to "GTM: Throttle: 70%" or similar).  "GTM" rules will try to shut off a GTI via frequency shift if battery charge is not enabled/called for; if battery charge is enabled/called for, it will try to "regulate" the charge current and voltage based on the user settings (using frequency shift for control).  You can manually enable charge once GTM is activated from the Command menu (OUT page -> press Enter, will select "Command" -> Enter).

I would suggest keeping an eye on the system for test purposes the first few charges, just to make sure things are working properly.  GTI backcharge is intrinsic to the LF inverter topology, so the only thing the inverter will be doing is trying to "regulate" the GTIs via frequency shift.  Keep an eye on the battery voltage; the GS inverter should throttle off the GTIs if the battery voltage reaches the currently active charge setpoint (i.e. bulk or float).


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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I ran it today for about 3 hours and it worked well. Charged the batteries when production was greater than load. It only frequency shifted once due to my average load being greater than my average production at that time but it seemed to work well although my micros don't have linear throttle so it's just off for mine. I did notice a flicker in my LEDs during large load variations and my micros did error out once due to "AC Voltage Out Of Range" Started my ac unit fine and I don't think it had to clamp down on the amperage although the inverter did beep for a second. 

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On 6/15/2023 at 3:16 PM, Sid Genetry Solar said:

(you'll see the Status line go to "GTM: Throttle: 70%" or similar)

This is what mine looked like. I just noticed the negative infront of the watts and the arrows going toward the battery voltage. 

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On 6/15/2023 at 3:16 PM, Sid Genetry Solar said:

You can manually enable charge once GTM is activated from the Command menu (OUT page -> press Enter, will select "Command" -> Enter)

I never saw that option there and I checked a couple times. I only see the charge option there when I have the input connected without the output hooked up. I adjusted the charge setting under the cfg tab to auto and set the charge trig high.

I did have the inverter error out once after I disconnected the output lines and plugged in the input. A second or two after plugging in the input I heard a pop and the inverter went red. I automatically turned off the inverter so I'm not sure what the code was. The pop I heard was the 15 amp breaker from the outlet I plugged the input into on the other side of the wall tripping. I tried it again after unplugging output neutral and it worked fine so not sure if that did it?


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

I did notice a flicker in my LEDs during large load variations

Sort of expected--but as long as it's just a brief flicker, and not a continued oscillation (or even a fading oscillation), that's fine.  I'd like to speed up reaction time somehow, but there's so many variables involved with cliffs on either side!

 

7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

and my micros did error out once due to "AC Voltage Out Of Range"

Did they indicate what the voltage had gone to?

 

7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

Started my ac unit fine and I don't think it had to clamp down on the amperage although the inverter did beep for a second. 

Beeped for a second...hmm, I'd be very curious what that alarm was.  It's on my list to make a set of "alarm trig" flags so we can see if any have been triggered in the current session (manual reset), which would definitely help here!

(FWIW you can check the FET amp limit trigger count from the STAT screen -> "BtyA_Cnt"; you can manually clear it to check for any counts when starting the AC.  If it doesn't increment, then the FET amp limit did not trigger.) 

 

7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

This is what mine looked like. I just noticed the negative infront of the watts and the arrows going toward the battery voltage.

Ah, OK--because the GS inverter was not actively frequency-shifting.  The "GTM" status currently only appears when frequency shifting--although now that I see your screenshot above, it looks like I should change this to read "GTM: Throttle 100%" if reverse power detected and no frequency shifting necessary.  As the inverter clearly is aware of the power flow!

 

7 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

I never saw that option there and I checked a couple times. I only see the charge option there when I have the input connected without the output hooked up. I adjusted the charge setting under the cfg tab to auto and set the charge trig high.

Hmm.  I don't have grid-tie inverters, so this might be a code bug on my end!  If the output wattage is negative, the "CHG" commands should be visible in the Command menu and on the local server webpage.  (Your screenshot above is from the remote server webpage, which needs some updates...)

The inverter should be applying charge rules, but it'd still be good to keep a close eye on the battery voltage while charging via GTIs at least for now!

 

8 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

I did have the inverter error out once after I disconnected the output lines and plugged in the input. A second or two after plugging in the input I heard a pop and the inverter went red. I automatically turned off the inverter so I'm not sure what the code was. The pop I heard was the 15 amp breaker from the outlet I plugged the input into on the other side of the wall tripping. I tried it again after unplugging output neutral and it worked fine so not sure if that did it?

Yeah, it would have been helpful to know what the code was; when the inverter LED goes red, it's electrically just as "off" as it is when the power switch is turned off (minus the logic, of course).  In other words...FETs all idled, relays switched off, etc.

My guess here is that the "output neutral" was wired to a mains-level neutral--and there might be a crossed wire on the AC input side of things, so when the inverter switched the mains relay on, it deadshorted the AC input (i.e. the relay will connect input "N" to output "N" for 120v input, so if AC "L" potential was connected to the input "N" terminal there'd be a deadshort), causing the tripped breaker.  Worth noting that the inverter mains relay basically just connects the AC input lines to the AC output lines at the proper time.


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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3 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

but as long as it's just a brief flicker, and not a continued oscillation (or even a fading oscillation)

Ya, just a flicker 

3 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

Did they indicate what the voltage had gone to?

No but here's their parameters for what will fault them.

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3 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

FWIW you can check the FET amp limit trigger count from the STAT screen -> "BtyA_Cnt"

So I have a screenshot of that page about an hour into my test and the count was at 1 so i guess it did clamp down? Would probably explain the micros fault too?

<a class="ipsAttachLink ipsAttachLink_image" href="/monthly_2023_06/Screenshot_20230617_153131_Chrome.jpg.5d7dfab0c30db68d818e14988dc2a1c1.jpg" data-fileid="2328" data-fileext="jpg" rel=""><img class="ipsImage ipsImage_thumbnailed" data-fileid="2328" data-ratio="180.72" width="415" alt="Screenshot_20230617_153131_Chrome.thumb.jpg.a340ba4fb0ffbd1fa417959dead19e0d.jpg" data-src="/monthly_2023_06/Screenshot_20230617_153131_Chrome.thumb.jpg.a340ba4fb0ffbd1fa417959dead19e0d.jpg" src="/applications/core/interface/js/spacer.png" />

 

3 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

My guess here is that the "output neutral" was wired to a mains-level neutral

Yes it is.

3 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

and there might be a crossed wire on the AC input side of things

From what I can tell everything seems fine there too. When checking ohms with the inverter input plugged in and charging the batteries I get 350 from the case to neutral or ground


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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6 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

So I have a screenshot of that page about an hour into my test and the count was at 1 so i guess it did clamp down? Would probably explain the micros fault too?

Not for a single count...no, if the overcurrent activates, it can accrue over 20,000 counts in a second.  A single count is literally closer to 1/24,000th of a second--so it definitely wouldn't cause a fault condition on the micros!

6 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

From what I can tell everything seems fine there too. When checking ohms with the inverter input plugged in and charging the batteries I get 350 from the case to neutral or ground

Ooh...you don't want to check continuity/resistance on a circuit that's powered up in any sort or fashion!  (That's one of the easiest ways to blow a meter up.)

So the case is coupled to Neutral with a 10nF cap (0.01uF) to try to "center" the chassis to the AC potential (per UL).

What I was referring to is that the internal "mains" relay will directly short the input L/L1 terminal to the output L1 terminal, and the input N/L2 terminal to the output N terminal (in 120v mode; for 240v input, it shorts to the output L2 terminal).  My guess is that somehow or another, your AC input potential got biased across one of these relay contacts, and it got shorted out when the relay switched on.


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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7 hours ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

What I was referring to is that the internal "mains" relay will directly short the input L/L1 terminal to the output L1 terminal, and the input N/L2 terminal to the output N terminal (in 120v mode

With inverter in pass-through mode and I reference input neutral I get 120 to output neutral, 240 to one of the output lines (not sure which one but can find out if relevant) and 0 to the other output line. If I reference input line I get 120 to each output line and 0 to neutral. Looking at the output I get 240 with l1 and l2 and I get 120 with neutral with either line. Looking at the outlet I'm getting the input from I get 120 from line to ground or neutral and 0 from neutral to ground. Seems like the inputs are swapped in the inverter? Can I just swapp the inputs on the outside or does something need to be done internally?


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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6 hours ago, Cali Carlos said:

Can I just swapp the inputs on the outside or does something need to be done internally?

No need to change anything internally...just the "labeling" of the inputs on the outside, as it seems that the two input lines are swapped.  Very easy to do in assembly, unfortunately 😉.


   
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(@cali-carlos)
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1 hour ago, Sid Genetry Solar said:

as it seems that the two input lines are swapped

They were swapped but it wasn't Sean's fault. I check continuity in the cord I was using for the input and the black wire was going to the larger neutral spade and the white wire to the smaller line spade. It's a factory cord too, not like someone mended it wrong. Sorry for all of the confusion 😕 


   
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(@sid-genetry-solar)
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Posted by: @cali-carlos
They were swapped but it wasn't Sean's fault. I check continuity in the cord I was using for the input and the black wire was going to the larger neutral spade and the white wire to the smaller line spade. It's a factory cord too, not like someone mended it wrong. Sorry for all of the confusion 😕

Hey as long as all ends well, that's what matters 😉.  At least now we know, thanks for the thread continuity.


   
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