Here is a photo of the solar array that we used in our lab tests.
The Green Machine makes use of photovoltaics for solar powered energy. The solar array will be used to power both the pump and the immersion heater of the Green Machine’s design. For the current solar array being used by the group, as shown above, each solar cell is rated at 1000 W/m2. In the laboratory setup, the solar cells are wired to a SunGuard Solar Controller. This controller delivers the converted solar energy to a 12V DC lead-acid battery, which connects to an AC-DC Powerverter. Using the Powerverter's output of 115V AC, the Green Machine's immersion bath and syringe pump system is powered. The total solar cell area on this array is 0.147 m2, which only produces 147 W of power. Therefore, calculations were performed to determine the necessary power requirements and solar cell area for the commercial scale-up design. The entire system will require 106.1 kW of power, which means a solar panel area of about 108 m2 is needed. It should be noted that this calculation of solar area adds about 2% extra area than what is specifically needed, as was recommended by research done on solar panels, to ensure that there is ample power available.