Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

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Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Matrix » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:45 pm

Greeting all!
Forgive my brash, unintroduced novel of an introduction, I just feel the need to keep my motivation flowing forward rather than focus on from where it is I come and what I’ve learned, well, not as yet anyway, as I write, thirsty for knowledge and opinion on the topic of alternative energy with a purpose in mind.
Though the purpose is singular, the motivation behind it is at least a three pronged basis.
I have purchased a twin axl, polished aluminium exterior, food grade interior, trailer. Not only this, but I’ve had built an exo skeleton which can support a tonne and is supported by four 5,000 lb supports. (Mobile, level and rock solid.)
The exo skeleton has the room for four 12v250W panels, with design allowing for another four to be added like “slide out drawers”, two either side. Giving a “rated” 2000W, the addition of at least one if not two 500W wind generators is also planned.
(Stabilising the system as much as possible without mains, so off grid)
I plan on running these to a 6x2V battery bank (1,000Ah)
Through two 60A charge 30A output SCC’s.
(Four panels to a SCC)
As for load,
SCC #1;
12V Fridge (75 to 100W), 12v Water pump, Computer station*, Soeakers.
SCC #2;
10L “instant” Solar Hot Water system (25A), Lighting.

* Apple MacBook Air

The start of my questions is this,
Does this sound appropriate considering I’m trying to go
100% Solar? (No gas, no generators)
Can I charge one battery bank with two SCC’s?
This was based on gear readily available on eBay with full 25 yr or ten years warranties dependant on product in question.

Now I got that out, Hi there!
I’m looking to convert this trailer into a mobile food prep capable kitchen, (it already has its 500ltr tank and a sink/stainless benches inside) but a good few reasons when combined has made me decide to make it happen.
GoGreen Energy
(I’m aware the construction of panels still carries a carbon footprint, still.)
From a business perspective it eliminates rent, power and water bills for a commercial food trailer, pretty handy.
But primarily, a lead by example approach.

(Even if the quest for knowledge one appears pompous or arrogant on public forums where emotion is lost in Black On illuminated white)

Regards,
- M
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:14 pm

Welcome to the Energy Matters Forums Matrix :)

It sounds like you have a big project ahead of you!

...available on eBay with full 25 yr or ten years warranties


I can only wish you good luck if you ever need to make a claim!
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Wed Mar 21, 2018 7:56 am

Matrix wrote:The exo skeleton has the room for four 12v250W panels,


You would be better off using more commonly available, less expensive panels as used in grid-connected systems, sometimes called 24V panels, although the voltage labels are largely irrelevant these days. Use an MPPT type charge controller to reduce the voltage to 12V if you really have to, but 24V would be a better idea for a Pb-acid battery

addition of at least one if not two 500W wind generators is also planned.


Unless you plan to operate in cloudy, extremely windy areas, I'd be reconsidering that idea. In almost every situation, PV panels will give you more energy than a wind generator of equivalent cost.

I plan on running these to a 6x2V battery bank (1,000Ah)


How about 8 X 200AH LiFePO4 3.2V cells for a nominal 26V instead? Much more efficient than old tech Lead-acid batteries, meaning more available energy from your panels. They can safely be discharged to a much lower SOC too, so you don't need as much capacity. Also a lot less space required for them, and a significant reduction in weight.

Readily available DC to DC converters can be used to reduce the voltage for 12V appliances, but 24V pumps and fridges are also available.

You can use 2 charge controllers to charge a battery.

10L “instant” Solar Hot Water system (25A)...


25A @12V? That wont be a very instant hot water system, it will be very slow!

It takes 4.2kJ to heat 1 litre of water by 1 degree.
If you want to heat (assuming zero losses) 50litres to 65C from 15C, then you require 4.2 X 50 X 50 = 10500kJ, or about 3kWh. In your planned 12V 25A "instant" HWS, that will take 10 hours... and there will be plenty of losses during that time, so more like 12+hours.
Your 2kW of PV, which will rarely be pointing straight at the sun, wont be anywhere near enough for that.
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Matrix » Wed Mar 21, 2018 8:01 am

Thank you!
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:58 pm

Do you have photos and dimensions for the trailer?

Oh, and BTW, it is highly unlikely that you would ever be granted approval from local authorities to have a 500W WTG attached to your trailer, for a number of reasons!
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Matrix » Wed Mar 21, 2018 5:12 pm

Ok @ Wind Generators.
Re: Hot water equation totalling 3kwh for 50 litres
of water from 15 degrees to 65 degrees, the 10L before
the 25Amp on my description signings a 10 litre system.
(Bucket of hot water)
Although it is becoming apparent that it’s going to have to be a hybrid system.
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Wed Mar 21, 2018 5:52 pm

Matrix wrote:Re: Hot water ... a 10 litre system.
(Bucket of hot water)


OK, I missed that, but it's still going to take ~2hours... not what I'd call instant. Is 10l of hot water really enough for a day of operation? You might be better off with a small evacuated tube system feeding an instantaneous gas heater, although transporting it may be tricky.
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby Privatteer » Thu Mar 22, 2018 8:24 am

There is various gas HWS instant for travel vehicles that will be a lot more efficient than trying to supply it off a mobile solar system. Quick google found this one as a example.
I expect your 25A unit is at 240V and a 10L per min system.

You need to acquire the regulations on food trailers. Depending on what you are doing I believe there will regs on various issues that will effect design.
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby davidg » Thu Mar 22, 2018 11:25 pm

Privatteer wrote:There is various gas HWS instant for travel vehicles that will be a lot more efficient.

Way simpler and more effective.

Privatteer wrote:You need to acquire the regulations on food trailers. There will be regs on various issues that will effect design.

These are basically mandatory, just get them, then you will know what you must do.
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Re: Seeking multiple opinions on commercial food trailer.

Postby fishifiedflotilla » Tue Mar 27, 2018 7:51 pm

This sound like a big and interesting project.
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