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Solar/wind/renewable s

  • 26-08-2022 9:33am
    Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 2,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭

    Any Interest in starting a thread on alternative energy and its applications in a farming setup.with electricity prices at 32 cent and a new level of uncertainty creeping into the oil/gas market should we be starting to engage more with the options. Giving solar a trial here at the moment and seems to be working well.i also think that farmers have to be careful in what contracts they sign up for and what companies they engage with.lets see how it goes


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,186 ✭✭✭Figerty

    Can you describe what you have done so far?

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 2,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭K.G.

    Just put in a solar pump on a shallow well that had no power near it.its a 600 watt dc pump with I would say 6 sq m of panels which seems to generate 630 watt s on good days.there is a tank on th e highest point on the farm which acts as the battery and the advantage of dc is no inverter losses.its a bit of a fact finding mission but so far it has worked.but now I m looking at option of a wind charger for the winter rough estimate is the solar panels are supplying 250 euro of power at 32 cent a unit.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,624 ✭✭✭cute geoge

    Bear with me here .I am contemplating a similar project .Is it simple gravity flow from the tank to the water troughs .What size tank what size troughs and what size pipe and what numbers of cattle and rough distance of tank from shallow well .Sorry for all the cross attling but hard to get info on this.Thanks in advance

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,667 ✭✭✭funkey_monkey

    We have a petrol pump lifting from a stream into a header tank before going out to the fields troughs by gravity. No use for cattle as the drinkers can't refill quick enough. Our troughs are 20 gallons capacity.

    Would recommend a pressurised system regardless of trough capacity or distance. Filters either side of the tank too. Have no plan to go renewable with our pump until the petrol pump gives up. Petrol pump allows us to divert water into the slurry tanks when mixing at a high flow rate which is very handy.

    We have solar yard lights and they are good, although in winter there can be a few days in the depths of winter when they are not great, but the tech is continually improving.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,854 ✭✭✭✭Base price

    Any recommendations on solar powered lights for the yard and do you know the costs. I just want a couple to illuminate the yard at night. We have electric ones which we can turn on if working in the dark but they would be too expensive to leave on all night.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 10,854 ✭✭✭✭Base price

    I read that SSE are increasing their electricity price by 39% in October which for me will mean I will be paying nearly 42c per unit.

  • Registered Users Posts: 408 ✭✭Silverdream

    I thought we were going to get a blast of new schemes in this new round of CAP but I haven't heard of anything yet. I'd be keen to put in as much Solar as possible to run the house and farm. I've rang around a few installers but they are so busy as you can't even get one's to ring you back so God help when it comes to pricing it. It's the same in much of Europe and the UK. I've a brother in London and he got in 4 measly panels on the roof. I'd swear you'd hardly run a radio off them, £13k STERLING!!!!

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,667 ✭✭✭funkey_monkey

    TBH - I couldn't recommend the ones I've got as they are an older version and times have moved on. However, I think that someone posted up lights earlier this year that was installed on the outside of a shed - I think it was @Say my name

    Yes it was - see thread here:

    Was actually last year. Fnck Covid. I've lost all track of time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,291 ✭✭✭Siamsa Sessions

    I’ve a 4-span shed roof facing south that I’d hope to put panels on at some stage.

    Is it all solar panels for sheds? Or are PV panels an option too?

    There are some tall trees that would need to be topped back if solar was the only option.


    Trading as Sullivan’s Farm on YouTube

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 2,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭K.G.

    Tank 700 m +from well at a head height of 80 ft or so.1 1/4 inch pipe 150 gl troughs and160 + cows.pipe size is crucial.the water can flow back when pump not pumping.It's not the only supply and the way we are set up there is 3 wells for the farm but the solar provided the extra water when we needed it that is when the sun is shining

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,693 ✭✭✭emaherx

    Did you go self install or get someone in, what pump did you get? Do the panels power the pump directly with no battery?

    And what did it all cost? (Just to be nosey)

    Been running my solar pumps for 3 seasons now and really happy with them. Much smaller scale tough, farm is fragmented so a couple of smaller pumps were needed to get water from different sources.

    Using a 12V 10A submersible pump to pump from a well and a river into IBC tanks using float switches to control and feeding drinkers by gravity. My setup uses a 100A battery and 100W Panel and also powers the fences and a couple of Raspberry pi's to monitor the water levels. System works well most of the grazing season but I did need to top-up batteries last Nov. I've considered a wind charger or second panel, but charging once or twice at the end of the season is not bad compared to hauling water a couple of times a week. Comfortably keeps about 20 cattle in water per pump/IBC (haven't tested much beyond that though)

    Also using a similar setup to irrigate my poly tunnel and garden from rainwater harvested in IBC's, only the water is pumped from the IBC using pumps with pressure switches to give enough pressure for sprinklers and hoses.

    Post edited by emaherx on

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 2,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭K.G.

    Bought the set up battery.panels power direct through a controller to a dc submersible pump so no inverter. As I said tank on hill so no pressure vessel.the water runs back down the pipe at night/wet days so the tank is the stacked up because it provided the extra water when I needed it so the cost didn't come into it as such but the wind generator has to stack up on a financial basis for the winter period.trying to figure out should I put a separate wind mill and pump or take off the solar panels for 4 /5months of the winter and swap in the wind generator. There seems to be a feeling that solar panels have become so cheap that they cant make smaller wind generator s competively any more.

    Post edited by K.G. on

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,706 ✭✭✭kevthegaff

    What are the small wind turbines like

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,862 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    It's solar pv (photo volactic).

    I suggest you look at the renewable energy forum to bring you up to speed on solar.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,862 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    Done to death on boards and FB . Expensive to buy and service. Questionable ROI.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,291 ✭✭✭Siamsa Sessions

    Trading as Sullivan’s Farm on YouTube

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 2,773 Mod ✭✭✭✭K.G.