PIP-4048MS inverter

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 09:03

Howard wrote:
Wed, 29 Nov 2017, 13:45
Hi Weber,
Thanks Mate. Are you going into production with the EV MX5?
Hi Howard. No. But I'm happy to convert another one for anyone who wants to pay. :)
May be you can give me some ideas on my VR commodore when I get round to it:)
Sure.
ionutd wrote:
Sat, 02 Dec 2017, 21:48
Hi Weber,
I have around two weeks on the 72.70c beta and the only issue that i notice its that the invertor temperature increased a bit after the upgrade:
before the upgrade the temperature was between 40 and 45 , now its around 45-50 celsius degrees.
Hi IonutD. Thanks for testing. What version were you running before the upgrade? What were the ambient air temperatures before and after? Were you running our LFP version or our lead-acid/lithium-cobalt version of 72.70c beta?
dinu_tiberiu_george wrote:
Sat, 02 Dec 2017, 23:43
Hy again. Today i have a smoky problem. I have 2 pip 5048ms connected in parallel. I connected my master pip 5048ms with an ethernet cable to the laptop and try to establishing the connection. And a minutes later a very dense smoke came out from the inverter. The inverter is still working properly, but the usb connection is not working any more on this inverter. If i use the connection from the slave inverter is working properly. I think that my comunication board of my inverter has gone. I already write a mail to mppsolar suport. Was it a mistake trying to connect via an ethernet cable trough rs322 port?
Hi dinu_tiberiu_george. Yes, it was a mistake to connect an ethernet cable to the RS232 port of the inverter. You should only use the cable that was supplied with the inverter, and a USB to D9 serial adapter, as we describe here. But I hope that MPPSolar support will recognise that by having an RJ45 socket for its RS232 port the product invites such a connection, and so I hope they will supply you with a new comms board.

If not, it can probably be repaired by replacing a few low-cost parts. If they are charred beyond recognition, tell us what their designators are (e.g "U2", "R3", printed in white on the circuit board) and we'll look them up. Or better still, post a photo.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by coulomb » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 09:10

Powermos2k17 wrote:
Sat, 02 Dec 2017, 00:19
I'm new of this forum.
Welcome, Powermos.
My friend asking me the following question about mixing the power between the power source solar, battery and utility.
I like to know if is possible drive the inverter behaviour from the point of view of the power to the load, in other word if is possible make a dynamic mixing of the power between solar, batteries and utility in order to preserve the batteries lifetime.
Using the RS232 commands, it's not possible to do much in this direction. I assume you would like to minimise the small charges and discharges from the battery as the load and solar power varies. Unfortunately, unless you change the firmware dramatically, it's not possible to blend battery power via the inverter with grid power. When power is supplied to the load from the battery (battery mode), it's not possible to use grid power at all, certainly not with standard or the present patched firmware. Weber and I are not willing to invest the huge amount of work that would be required to safely fiddle with the inverter control part of the firmware.
My think is to drive the inverter by a selfmade microprocessor based card able to manage the inverter protocol command, I can do that without any problem (I can use micro, asic, writing firmware and make pcb as well).
So this self-made microprocessor would talk to the main DSP via the 2400 bps serial interface? If so, you could do the same from a PC or completely external microprocessor, and save the hassle of a custom PCB. If you mean replacing the existing daughter board that holds the DSP microprocessor, that's a massive amount of work. I would think that you would rather retain the existing DSP daughter board, and modify the existing firmware. But even this is a massive amount of work, for what I see as very little gain.
Before start in this task I kindly ask you that are more expert with this inverter if this should be feasible by using external current transducer with a custom card and most important if there are commands able to perform dynamical power mixing in that sense.
There is already a LEM current sensor on the AC output, so no need for an external one. You could gain some speed with an external sensor, but there aren't commands that would allow the SCC charge current (the only real variable) to be modified any quicker than it already is.

The blending that you seek really requires a "hybrid" inverter, where grid power can be adjusted to keep the battery power low.
I'm a power electronic engineer, loving reverse engineering and modding stuff!
You might be able to achieve your goals on either a Voltronic Power hybrid inverter like the Infini series, or the Goodwe ES series. Unfortunately, I have no experience with any of those.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by dinu_tiberiu_george » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 14:06

Hy,
If the mpp solar does not support a new board, is it ok to leave it just like that? I am using the connection of the second inverter. Thx

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by PurePower » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 16:22

Hi weber and Coulomb,

This is an awesome achievement to get us all this far. We highly appreciate your efforts in doing this. If ever there is a need for me to test any type of scenario, please do not hesitate to PM me. I'll try and assist in any way possible.

Cheers mate!

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 19:25

dinu_tiberiu_george wrote:
Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 14:06
Hy, If the mpp solar does not support a new board, is it ok to leave it just like that? I am using the connection of the second inverter. Thx
Yes. It's OK to leave it like that. The comms is opto-isolated, so you could only have damaged components on the serial port side of the optos, not the inverter side.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by ionutd » Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 20:22

weber wrote:
Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 09:03
ionutd wrote:
Sat, 02 Dec 2017, 21:48
Hi Weber,
I have around two weeks on the 72.70c beta and the only issue that i notice its that the invertor temperature increased a bit after the upgrade:
before the upgrade the temperature was between 40 and 45 , now its around 45-50 celsius degrees.
Hi IonutD. Thanks for testing. What version were you running before the upgrade? What were the ambient air temperatures before and after? Were you running our LFP version or our lead-acid/lithium-cobalt version of 72.70c beta?
I'm running lithium cobalt version dsp_BC1_72.70c, before i had 74.smth :)
Ambient temperature didn't change it was around 26 before the upgrade , and its around 26 now.
Should i try to update to dsp_LC1_72.70c ?
Thanks
IonutD

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 07:28

ionutd wrote:
Sun, 03 Dec 2017, 20:22
I'm running lithium cobalt version dsp_BC1_72.70c, before i had 74.smth :)
I'm afraid you're going to have to explain what 74.smth is. Use private messaging if you prefer.

Folks should rest assured that there is no reason why inverter temperatures should be any different between the original 72.70 and our patched 72.70c. We have not changed anything to do with fan operation, or low-level inverter or charger operation. And the temperatures that IonutD mentions are not a problem.
Should i try to update to dsp_LC1_72.70c ?
Yes. Everyone who feels competent to carry out the reflashing operation should update their post-2013 PIP-4048MS or Axpert MKS 5kVA to the 72.70c release version that is compatible with their battery, even if they are currently running 73.00.

The main reason for the existence of our patched firmware is to correct two bugs in the charging code, which under certain very common circumstances result in stopping charge (going to float) prematurely. This results in wasting your available solar resource, not using the available capacity of your battery, and in the case of lead-acid batteries, prematurely ageing your battery.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by paulvk » Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 16:43

Please note on the RJ45 of the inverter there is a +15 volt power output to drive the remote control unit this is provided by a small transformer on the comms board which also provides this 15 volts to the RS232 so be careful not to short this out.
I run the HLKRM04 RS232 to TCPIP converters from this which gives the inverters a TCPIP connection either cabled or wireless.
Also note I change settings over the internet without any problems this is safe to do as the manufacturer has correctly used a CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Check) to confirm valid data.

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by PurePower » Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 20:26

weber wrote:
Fri, 01 Dec 2017, 15:51
We've also added seven "easter eggs", that we collectively call "AusieView". We'll award coloured stars to posts that describe any of these easter eggs in a way that benefits others. They aren't exactly hidden. We're just too lazy to document them ourselves. :D We figure we've done enough work just implementing them. :geek: :ugeek:
I'm currently running the LFP 72.70c firmware, these are the notable changes (hoping they are the easter eggs)

1. The Up button now only loops through all the Input display info(Top left info)
2. The Down button now only loops through all the Output display info(Top right info), effectively the up and down buttons work independently.
3. The Input display now also shows the Inverter temperature.
4. The Solar panel icon on the LCD display shows the amount Solar power available. Not sure how its calculated though?
5. The program settings text display has changed on almost all the program settings from 1-38. Eg. Program 1 now displays "out [01] Sbu" , Program 6 now displays "oLr [06] LrE", Program 26 now displays "AbS [26] 53.2v", Too many to mention, although i could list them all.
6. Program 32 has a little "m" now displaying, i'm guessing to indicate that the setting is defined in minutes.
7. Program 16, Solar first option LCD text display changed from "CSO" to "SoL"

I hope i got them all or are there more?

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by coulomb » Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 21:22

PurePower wrote:
Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 20:26
I'm currently running the LFP 72.70c firmware, these are the notable changes (hoping they are the easter eggs)

I hope i got them all or are there more?
Well done, PurePower! I count 5 stars there. We counted your items 1 and 2 as the same easter egg, for example.

Five stars.png
Five stars.png (89.34 KiB) Viewed 1833 times

So there are still two more to be found. Plus a couple associated with dynamic current commands that we were going to give away in the release post, but it seems Weber overlooked it. So four more up for grabs! Who will claim them?

[ Edit: My bad. The two stars associated with dynamic current control are actually given away in the dynamic current control manual. ]
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by coulomb » Tue, 05 Dec 2017, 09:24

PurePower wrote:
Mon, 04 Dec 2017, 20:26
4. The Solar panel icon on the LCD display shows the amount Solar power available. Not sure how its calculated though?
The solar panel icon bar-graph shows the SCC output power rounded to the nearest kilowatt (up to 3.5 kW). It's not "available solar power" (that would be really useful, but it would be impossible to calculate, as far as I know). So really this is the same information as PV "input" power, except quantised to just 4 levels. [ Edit: "input" is in quotes because it's really the output of the SCC. But since the SCC claims around 98% efficiency, it's close to the PV input power (PV voltage multiplied by PV current). ]

Weber has reminded me that he didn't overlook the LCD changes associated with the Dynamic Charge Control; they are in the DCC manual (updated since the beta post).
So that's back to two stars left. However, it's all rather arbitrary, so extra stars can be awarded for extra details. For example, Weber wanted to cut one of your stars down to one sixth of a star! That might be a clue that could earn you or other readers an additional star.

[ Edit: Condensed long explanation of PV bar graph. Added note re "input" power. ]
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Fri, 08 Dec 2017, 22:28

The manual below describes all the display improvements added in patched firmware 72.70c.
AussieView Manual.txt
(8.71 KiB) Downloaded 99 times
[Edit: superceded, see below]
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Mon, 11 Dec 2017, 08:31

Updated to describe all the display improvements including the improvements to the 7-segment "font".
AussieView Manual.txt
(10.57 KiB) Downloaded 156 times
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by jds686868 » Wed, 13 Dec 2017, 13:41

Hi folks, not sure if this is the correct forum so let me know if not.

I have just ordered a PIP5048MSD and trying to decide what panel string configuration I should use. I will be purchasing a second PIP5048MSD with parallel kits if testing goes ok. (I have been running a shed/pool pump off an IPS4000 ( PIP "4048") for 9 months and am looking at converting part of the main house load to "hybrid" mode with 2 x 5048MSD's.)

The panels I plan on using for the 5048 are rated Voc = 37.x volts. When I plugged the multimeter in today (nice 25 degree day with lots of sun, panels were cool to start with) I get a Voc of 35.9 - 36.2V. After a few minutes in the sun the voltage dropped a couple of tenths. Each 5048 will have 6kw of panels across the 2 inputs. Panels are 3-5 years old.

The panels on the existing 4048 read around 120Voc at the panels and around 115.5Voc at the 4048. There is a bit of a cable run and currently going through 2 sets of breakers which all adds resistance.

So what's my question..... Should I put 3 or 4 panels in series?? 4 panels calculates to 144Voc, which by the time it gets to the 5048 will probably be around 140Voc (??). My guess is Vmp would be closer to 110V - 115V. Is this living too dangerously from a PIP reliability point of view and the 5048 max Voc of 145V?? What do people see during winter with respect to Voc if the temp drops to 10 degrees say?

I live in Queensland (Sunshine Coast), so winters never get really cold here.
My concern if I go 3 in series is that Vmp will be at the lower end of what I would like (aiming for 100V-110V), and obviously current goes up a bit as well, more cable, more breakers, less efficient? etc)

Thanks in advance for any advice.
John

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Wed, 13 Dec 2017, 14:30

Welcome John. I direct you to this post,
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=4332&p=58265&hilit ... age#p58265
updated by this,
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=4332&p=60374&hilit ... age#p60374
and this.
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=4332&p=61829&hilit ... age#p61829
Another option, apart from two 72-cell panels, or 3 of the REC-PEs, is two of these in series:
http://www.rpc.com.au/catalog/seraphim- ... -4524.html

We can calculate your open circuit voltage at 10 °C if you tell us the exact Voc at STC (25 °C) and the temperature coefficient of voltage, from the panel datasheet. Or just give us a link to the datasheet.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by jds686868 » Wed, 13 Dec 2017, 15:01

Hi. Voc at 25= 37.2. Temp co Voc = -0.32%/c.

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Wed, 13 Dec 2017, 16:09

Going from 25 °C to 10 °C is a drop of 15 degrees. So the open circuit voltage will go up by 15 * 0.32% = 4.8%. So it will be 104.8/100 * 37.2 = 39.0 V. So 3 in series will be under 120 V (and will remain so down to 2 °C). But four of them would be 156 V.

I note that there is no voltage drop due to cable or breaker resistance in the case of open circuit voltage, because there is zero current.

The lower limit for Vmp for the PIP is pretty much its absorb voltage setting [26] as required for your battery [Edit: possibly plus 1.5 V as mentioned by Coulomb, here]. So 3 in series will be fine in that regard too.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by jds686868 » Thu, 14 Dec 2017, 06:02

Cool, thanks for the confirmation Dave. 3s it will be then. Not sure why I was getting a few volts drop close to the PIP - maybe a bit of cloud cover when I went to measure?
Thanks again.

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by rayellam » Fri, 15 Dec 2017, 21:21

Hi All,
Ive been following this thread for over a year now, im an electronics design engineer and appreciate all the input here from obviously very talented/knowledgeable members.

I purchased some a "clone" of a PIP-4048 from a company called CAP Solar around 14 months back, they advertised it as having MPPT charger but looking in the guts of the unit it's actually a PWM..................anyway all that aside. Im considering buying a GENUINE PIP-4048GE inverter from MPP Solar.

There has been a lot of pointers to unreliability problems with the DC side bus on the old 4048. The PIP-4048GE obviously has a very different DC side design as it allows a solar input voltage of 150 to 450VDC. Has any one with electronics knowledge done a tear down on this unit? how is the reliability? is it better than the old units?

Any input would be VERY welcome.

TIA
Ray

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by andys » Sat, 16 Dec 2017, 07:48

jds686868 wrote:
Wed, 13 Dec 2017, 13:41
So what's my question..... Should I put 3 or 4 panels in series??
Three panels is optimal. with 250W panels I see (roughly) voltages of 70 to 90 under load.

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by andys » Sat, 16 Dec 2017, 07:49

rayellam wrote:
Fri, 15 Dec 2017, 21:21
The PIP-4048GE obviously has a very different DC side design as it allows a solar input voltage of 150 to 450VDC.
You didn't say if you live in Australia. One of the advantages of the old PIP is the DC voltages stay under 120V DC and thus it is legal for non-electricians to configure the DC wiring of these units (provided the standards are followed), one less thing to worry about.

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by rayellam » Sat, 16 Dec 2017, 09:47

Hi Andys,
I live in the Philippines so we are not plagued with regulations (yet). The question i am asking is "has any one with electronics knowledge done a tear down on this unit? how is the reliability? is it better than the old units?"

As far as panel wiring goes, i have 10 x 250W panels, the manual for the inverter suggests that the minimum number of panels in a string is 6 so it looks like i will series all 10, giving a VOC of 377V (yikes). I think ill put some BIG RED warning labels in the panel :-)

I do not want to throw good money at bad stuff and thought maybe someone out there can give me their thoughts on this kit if they are using it..

Thanks
Ray

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by weber » Sat, 16 Dec 2017, 18:32

PIP-4048GE Analysis

[Edit Aug-2018: Everything below applies equally to the PIP-5048GE and PIP-5048MG]

Hi Ray, Thanks for the kind words. I haven't done a tear-down, or even seen one. But I have an analysis of the PIP-4048GE based on the eBay ads and the manual.

1. Yes, if they are 60 cell panels (as 250 W panels would usually be), you will need to put all ten in series for this inverter.

2. It is not obvious that its battery-side MOSFETs or capacitors would be different from those in the PIP-4048MS (where they are a known weakness). But I note that they have slightly improved the voltage rating of these parts in recent MS deliveries (but not the lifetime or impedance of the capacitors).

3. We do not have access to firmware for the GE and so cannot fix the charging bug, if it still exists.

4. The array voltage is lethal and yet they do not have any insulation monitoring (if designed to have a floating PV array) or any earth-leakage/residual-current detection (if not). And it is unclear which of those two types of shock protection will work (if any).

5. It appears to not have any cover over its 230 Vac terminals.

6. Its AC output cannot be paralleled with others of its kind. Although the manual makes no mention of this either way, the old ad linked above states in plain chinglish: "**Note: this PIP4048GE model is NOT with Parallel able design."

7. Its maximum total charge current is limited to 80 A (unlike the 140 A of an MS) despite the fact that it can separately charge at 60 A from the AC, and 80 A from the solar, just like an MS. This suggests that the GE's SCC (Solar Charge Controller) connects to the 400 V side of the DC-DC converter stage (instead of the battery side as it does in the MS), and so the total battery charge current is limited by what can be pushed backwards through the DC-DC converter stage.

Further to 4 above: If the array is floating, it could be made safe by an insulation monitor such as the Bender isoPV425, or some other isoPV models shown on this page.

However, if I'm right in 7 above, then it will not work with a Bender unit, because the PV array is not floating, nor can it be earthed, because it would connect to the DC bus that the 230 Vac output sine wave is produced from, with no intervening transformer. And it seems unlikely there would be an isolating transformer in the SCC itself. So the PV array will have a common-mode AC voltage relative to earth, possibly at 30 kHz or so. This is the same as what happens with a transformerless grid-feed inverter. This will not work with any of those bender units because they assume an array that is floating with respect to earth (or functionally-earthed via a high-valued resistor).

If I'm right, you would instead need to use a Type-B RCD (Residual Current Device) on the AC output, to detect earth leakage from the array. Type-B RCDs can detect a DC component in the AC signal, where an ordinary RCD can't.

Either way, to know whether you were protected, you would need a means of testing, by deliberately applying some leakage from each of the array terminals to earth. The protection devices should have a "Test" button that does this job. Failing that, three 10 kΩ 5 watt resistors connected in series would probably do it. But you'd be dealing with deadly voltages, so you should have some training in electrical work.

If anyone already has a PIP-4048GE, and the required training in electrical work, and wants to tell us whether the array is floating or not, or you want to find out before you go and buy a Bender or a type-B RCD: You can use those same resistors to soft-earth one side of the array and then measure the AC voltage across the resistors. If it's floating, the AC voltage should not be more than a few volts. If it's transformerless then there will be more than 100 V of AC. For these tests, the PIP itself needs to be earthed, as it normally would be. And its neutral output also needs to be connected to earth, as it normally would be via the MEN link in your switchboard, if it was powering household loads.
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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by rayellam » Sun, 17 Dec 2017, 15:41

Hi Weber,
Many thanks for your analysis on the GE. After 24 hours of thought and studying the data available on this inverter coupled with your valued input, im feeling less inclined to purchase for the following reasons.

1. The very high PV array voltage makes me feel VERY uncomfortable for safety reasons. Also i had not rely considered the lack of protection against this high voltage on the inverter it's self.

2. Will i bump into a bunch of reliability issues the GE may throw back at me. If we take the PIP-4048MS as a worked example then that's not a particularly good starting point.

My budget is fairly limited so I am currently researching some other offerings with similar functionality to the PIP series. One that looks interesting is the Growatt SPF5000. One thing it lacks compared to the PIP4048GE inverter is a battery equalization function. I have just purchased 8 x Trojan T106-RE batteries and i rely want to treat these babies well.

Ill post more of what i find as i progress, i feel relived i did NOT push the "order now" button the other night after a couple of beers :-)

Best regards and thanks again
Ray

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Re: PIP-4048MS inverter

Post by cristof » Wed, 20 Dec 2017, 23:25

Hi all,
first please apologize for my poor english.
I am runing a new solar inverter from MPP SOLAR (VOLTRONIC for sure)
It's a MPI serie 5.5kw. It's working well from the front keyboard, but imposible to connect to the software (SOLAR POWER) (similar to watch power, but MPI serie is GRID / OFFGRID). My laptop is window 10, when I connect the USB cable to inverter, there is a device detection, (management device as HID device).
In the CD for software there is a software called commAssistant. if I run it I can send a few HID command as QPI,QI, QPIRI...
it's seems the connexion is good.
But nothing, no data, no connexion from SOLAR POWER software.
Does somebody can help me ?

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