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Meet George. As our collection of solar panel arrays grows, I decided to give them names. As the panels were given to us by St.George’s Church in Belfast, George seemed appropriate. Plus when he stops working I have a name to hang the insults on. George is a mighty 2Kw array, carefully sited to avoid shading, other than that provided by nosey horses. ¬† The array is mounted on a tube steel frame, which is well anchored into the ground, so that it doesn’t become airborne. ¬†Power is then fed up a couple of really quite big cables to the all new mission control centre, aka the washroom.

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The beady eyed will notice that we don’t have a vast amount of battery power at the moment, although it will keep us going until we add something a little more substantial. Power is managed by the large blue inverter/charger, which takes the battery input and feeds it to the buildings via yet more huge cables. Something I’ve learned quickly is that there’s no such thing as an oversized cable when it comes to off grid power. They are all bloody enormous.

We owe the safety of our specification to Philip at Leisure Batteries Ireland, who is patiently helping with kit and advice when it looks like we’re going astray.

When its all live, later this week, we should have a generating capacity of 4Kw, which in a good hour will provide all the power we use in a day, and in the depths of winter, should provide just enough. Once we are certain that all is well, it will be time to make the call to NIE, to ask them to kindly remove their power pole, at which point celebrations will be had.

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