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1  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Mining (Altcoins) / Crazydane's 32 kw solar array build feeding 16 kw worth of miners on: January 15, 2018, 02:00:57 AM
I figured I'd start a thread detailing my 3 stage (so far) built out to what is currently a 128 panel, 32 kw solar array to assist with offloading the cost of my mining operation.

It all started during the summer of 2016, before I got into mining.  I just wanted to generate my own power, but still be connected to the grid via an arrangement known as net metering.  In a nutshell, that means that when I generate more power than I use, my meter runs backwards, and I'm credited at the same rate I'm billed, for any power I put back into the grid.

I have 2 buildings on my property, the main dwelling with a 400A service, and my shop building with a separate 400A service.  When I inquired about going solar and wanting to connect all the panels to the shop building, I was told that was a no no since the shop building used very little power on an annual basis compared to the main dwelling.  So I had to disconnect the service at the shop, and instead, have the house be the single service entrance, which would then have to feed the shop and have the solar farm connected to it.

So in order to accomplish that, I had to first have the power to the shop building terminated.  POCO come out and drop the lines feeding the service to the shop:



I then dug up the 500 MCM Al cables between the pole and the shop, and dug a new trench from the house to the shop, to drop them back into:



What a mess that was...  500 MCM cable is pretty damn stout, btw:



So in order to meet code, I had to get a 400A safety disconnect and since I wanted to have a whole house backup generator, a 400A transfer switch.  The POCO was kind enough to drop off a new 320A meter base (transient rating is 400A), so that I could do all my prep work prior to the cut over.  So here are all 3 pieces prior to installation:



Here's the new meter base and safety disconnect mounted with the existing service just "flapping in the air":



Called the POCO back out, and it took me about 45 minutes from when the cut the power at the pole, to pull the old meter base and replace it with the 400A transfer switch and get everything wired to the point they could restore power:



After the "ground work" inspection, I was then able to back fill the trenches and seed:



So now I could finally prep for installing the first solar array, which consisted of 56 panels mounted on my shop building roof.

Here are the panels and assorted hardware:





I started by installing all the mounting brackets on the roof and then the bottom skirts:



After a few days, I was about half way there (I'm doing all this solo, btw):



6 days later I was down to the last panel:





Now it was time to do the electrical work.  The 56 panels on the roof consists of 4 strings with 14 panel in each.  I use micro inverters that are rated for 250W, so each string can generate up to 3,500 watts @ 240V.  Here's what each panel looks like before mounting on the roof:



So the DC voltage from the panel if fed into the inverter, which in turn puts out 240A AC which is then connected in series with the other panels in each string:

At the end of each string, there is what is know as an "end-run connector".  It simply terminates the AC voltage to 10 gauge wire, which is feed down to a 20A breaker:



All 4 end run connectors are then combined into a single run down into the breaker panel:



And here are the 4 solar panel strings terminated into 20A breakers in the sub-panel:

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