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Portable Farms® – Go Solar and OFF GRID. So, Sexy.

Portable Farms® – Go Solar and OFF GRID. So, Sexy.
– By Colle and Phyllis Davis

 

PFAS LLC is now offering their Portable Farms® Kits designed for SOLAR installations.

The PFAS LLC Research Center installation at our headquarters in Southern Florida has been operating on solar power since last August and has not missed a beat. The system is 100% solar powered and you too can have a system solar powered Portable Farms® with 12v air compressors and timers.

Full disclosure: We use a slightly modified solar electric system with a 12VDC to 110v AC converter for the large air pump because of the noise factor. We have on hand and have used a 12v air compressor for the CAD Pump and it works just fine but is much noisier than the 110VAC compressor. You have been forewarned. 🙂

The PFAS LLC Florida solar electrical system:

solar panel

  A single 100 watt panel installed next to a Portable Farms® Aquaponics System        

The increasing demand from our students in areas of the world where electrical power is erratic or non-existent has prompted us to offer the Portable Farms® Kit that is part of the Aquaponics University Portable Farms® Aquaponics Systems Course© with a 12 volt DC OPTION. The price is exactly the same as the regular 110 AC system, but we need to know when you order the AU Course or additional Portable Farms® Kits that you want the 12volt option.

solar systemWith the price of solar panels continuing to drop, the price/value proposition has swung over to favor the solar installations EVEN IF YOU HAVE GRID POWER. For example, the system in use –shown above – is a 100watt panel, MPPT controller, a 12v constantly on air pump for the air stones, a 12v timer, (here is where the difference in our system lies) a 700watt converter 12/110 to run a 110 VAC 65lmp air pump to run the CAD Pump and one deep cycle marine battery. That’s it. The system is bullet proof with all the controls on a panel under the Grow Table.

 

 

What will ‘going solar’ do for you?

  • Reduce the worry of a power failure that could impact your fish.
  • Reduce the cost of electrical power from your house. Our system will take about 2 year to pay for itself because so little power is needed for the Portable Farms®.
  • Increasing the solar installation size to run Grow Lights for winter growing will quadruple the size/cost and will take about 3.5 years to pay off depending on the size of the installation.
  • Give you incredibly huge bragging rights.
  • Reduce your carbon footprint.

There you have it, PFAS LLC has made solar power components an option with their Portable Farms® Kits. If you are planning a commercial installation the needs of a 10,000 sq ft (1,000m2) climatically adapted building on solar is about the same as a small 2 bedroom house. The main difference is that the Portable Farms® uses the most electricity when the sun is shining so the battery bank can be much smaller than for a house.

To insure you receive the correct power components for your Portable Farms® Kit(s) you must notify us when you receive your Congratulations on Graduating Letter (or before) so we send you the right Portable Farms® Kit.

Begin reducing your carbon footprint and enroll in the Aquaponics University Portable Farms Aquaponics Systems Course© today and let us know when you start, that you are joining the solar revolution and want the 12volt Portable Farms® Kit for your installation.

6 comments

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  1. george

    Will this PDF give me a detailed explanation on how I can set up my pumps to run of solar (working what solar panel I need, how many batteries I need setting up and wirering. I need my pump to be able to run for 19 hours when no sun)

    1. portfarms

      George,

      You have not provided enough information to answer your questions. Yes the book will tell you how to size your system to run your system. It gives you the formulas needed to size any solar powered installation used for solar. This does not include heating the building.

      Colle

  2. Juanita

    Thanks for sharing. Eventually I would like to go solar too. One problem in Florida is storing batteries. I’m not sure if you guys have checked into the Tesla Power Wall or not but it seems to be a good solution for residential and commercial applications. It’s made to work with alternative power sources and will also require an inverter but the potential for commercial urban farms to go off grid is limitless. The residential model sells for around $3500. The only problem I see is the legislature that was written that can fine you for going completely off grid.

    Juanita

    1. portfarms

      Juanita,

      Battery storage is expensive and the solution you suggest is even more expensive than commercial deep cycle batteries BECAUSE it can not be recharged over of few dozen times and then it has to be replaced. Not a good solution to a not a problem. Solar is not a perfect solution, nothing is. Good enough works extremely well. PFAS LLC only addresses the power of the aquaponics installation, NOT power for a home. The requirements are very different.

      Legislation is not a problem if only the aquaponics installation is on solar and no power is being fed back into the grid.

      Good luck in all of your endeavors.

      Colle

  3. Joe Kaemerer

    Great information on Solar. for my greenhouse and work shop I have four 135 watt/12Vdc Solar panels charging 10 deep cycle batteries through a Tristar 60 Charge controller. For those days where it is cloudy and low output from my solar system, I also have an Air -X wind turbine generator that can keep my batteries charged. I have a 1000 watt Inverter 12V DC to 115 volt AC, which powers my Air Pump. This may sound a bit overkill, however it can power my whole system including basic house hold needs and work shop if needed.
    My main solar aray system on the house is Net Metering approved and I actually feed enough power back into the grid that my entire electric bill for house, greenhouse and shop for last month was only $47. This is down from $630 before my solar system was up and running.

    1. portfarms

      Joe,

      Thank you for the kind words. That sounds like the perfect solar/wind electric system for you. Lots of storage and it’s paying for itself already. With the Return on Investment at that level we can see why more and more people are opting for solar/wind.

      The solar electric on the Portable Farm was install last August and has no missed a beat. We’ve had to replace the inverter, but that was my fault. Our new solar electric system going on our sailboat is 4 panel of 48volt and 280watts with MPPT and controls plus eight 6volt batteries for storage. The higher voltage means less amps and that makes it MUCH safer to work with. The panels only output 4 to 5 amps under top load. Yes, that will kill you, but it is much safer than the 40amps a 12 volt system puts out. The electric motor in the boat is a 48volt/18hp with a 2.73 reduction gear so it turns fast enough to keep cool. Installing the controls this coming week. Very exciting.

      Keep us posted on your progress.

      Colle

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