korro avatar image

Can Phoenix VE.Direct work without batteries ?

I have a micro hydroturbine which gives a variable cc voltage between 40 and 70v and up to 1kw of power. I wonder if I can connect the Phonenix Inverter VE.Direct 48v 1200VA directly to the hydro turbine for producing 230v AC to act as an electrical generator for my off-grid solar inverter which is connected to my batteries and the house.

During the winter, there are days where the solar panels don't produce enough energy and a I have plenty of water running through the creek.

In short my question would be: could the hydro turbine be a battery in disguise for the Victron inverter and produce AC as an electrical generator would do?

Thanks in advance.

Hydro and Wind Power
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1 Answer
wkirby avatar image
wkirby answered ·

No this would not work very well at all. The turbine output would be too high impedance and too unstable.
Best case, the inverter might power up, but as soon as a load is applied you'll get all sorts of DC ripple problems and the inverter will keep dropping out. Also turbine RPM will be unstable too.
Also 70V is too high input Voltage.

Much better to use the turbine to charge a battery, even a small 50 - 100Ah battery, to act as a buffer and run the inverter from the battery.
The battery will also help to regulate the turbine speed because the battery Voltage is more stable and predictable.

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I guess that the turbine+regulator+battery+inverter solution is a. 2,000 euro solution; Can I have a buck converter between the alternator and the Phoenix VE.Direct inverter which might give a constant 48 DCV to the inverter ? Would this setup keep happy the inverter?

Now you are just moving the problem along from the Inverter to the DC-DC converter. I also don't think the DC-DC converter will be able to supply the peak demands of the inverter and then you still have the power variations of the turbine reaching the DC-DC converter.

The answer to your question is still the same, the inverter needs a battery to work properly, that is how it was designed.
Also, I'm pretty sure a 1.2kW DC-DC converter will cost more than a small type battery like I suggested. You need the battery for a buffer for smoothing out the inconsistent power from the turbine, you don't need a big battery for energy storage.