Charging & Water Heating with on Grid Load Sharing

New Bespoke Solar Systems

Onboard Solar – History

Onboard Solar has for the last 10 years provided off grid solar systems for boats. We adopted an approach of providing fixed price pre configured complete system, installed on a boat for a fixed price regardless of boat location. These systems designed via a charge controller to top up the boats domestic batteries during the day while providing enough excess power to ensure any equipment such as refrigeration, pumps etc could run during the day while the solar was generating.

The key to success of such a system being advising the customer on how to best set their boat up for off grid use. Adopting a predominately 12v lifestyle with 12v fridge, 12v USB sockets for device charging, 12v TV and entertainment systems. This 12v lifestyle strategy, not relying on an inverter and power hungry 240v meaning a relatively small system coupled with a relatively small typical boat battery bank of around 400 amp hours capacity, could sustain a boat for days on end without engine running (well, certainly from Spring till Autumn). Since 2012 we have successfully installed over 2,500 systems from this fixed price range, typically between 2 and 6 panels depending on customer requirement, how the boat is set up and of course available budget.

New Bespoke Systems

At the start of 2022 as well as offering our very popular “packaged” fixed price systems, we launched a fully bespoke service. This is aimed at those who have much larger requirements, space limitations for panels or simply need something more than a standard system. One such requirement received in August 2022 was for an intelligent large scale system for a wide beam that would supply all the power while cruising but also allow the solar and shore power to load share to reduce on grid electricity bills. This is the case study documented within this article.