Hybrid Renewable Energy System

I’m wondering about the feasibility of a project I’m working on for school. I am creating a hybrid system that will integrate a 100-W solar panel, 400-W wind turbine, and a piston-driven turbine wave energy generator. Energy will be stored in a 12V deep cycle marine battery. The intended load is minimal (about 5-10 60-watt incandescent light bulbs.

I am looking into a similar project that was previously done. I have obtained most of the hardware from this older project but am wondering if using an arduino controller is my best bet.

Is there a way, or are there components that will allow me to use the Arduino as a charge controller/power monitor?

I hope this isn’t too out there. I’m a mechanical engineering student, my knowledge of electrical is limited. Please forgive.

The Arduino can certainly be used to monitor voltage and current, and also control relays or transistors to switch power sources. There are plenty of descriptions for each of these subtasks on the web, so start small and learn how to do each individual bit before combining it all together.

For such limited energy resources it seems silly to use inefficient incandescent bulbs.

Are you needing the incandescent bulbs as a load for the turbines for when the battery is fully charged? Where Leds would not have enough of a draw.

I hope this isn't too out there. I'm a mechanical engineering student, my knowledge of electrical is limited. Please forgive.

The best solution would be to partner-up with an electrical engineering student.

Unless you are actually building/fabricating the wind generator and the wave piston, this "feels like" an electrical/electronics project to me. There's nothing with a mechanical guy doing an electrical project, but this is a "big" project, and there's plenty of power to burn-up electrical components during development and debugging. :D

The "Arduino" part of this project should be relatively simple, but the sensors, power-switching, and power-control won't be that straight-forward.

Overall, this is NOT a simple project! Are any of the 3 power sources up-and-running individually yet?

Also, when you're trying to complete a fairly big project like this it might not be the best time to for the Arduino & electronics learning curve.

If you already know some programming, you should be able to handle the programming task. But if you can get someone else to handle the electrical/electronics task and get all of the hardware connected to the Arduino before you start programming, that should help you a lot.

This is a group project. I am working with 5 other individuals (all mechanical engineering students). Unfortunately, there is no electrical engineering program at my school yet. We were able to obtain the circuitry that was used the previous time this project was attempted. The difference in our project (and what adds more of a mechanical eng. aspect) is the design of the wave energy component, as well as the chosen solar panel, load, and system body. The solar panel and wind turbine have been tested individually, and the wave component is currently being built.

This is the circuitry that was given to us.

A couple of us are trying to identify all the components and what they do. But we’re not sure if this is the most optimal layout/usage of components.

The other group was able to learn most of this with substantial help from a professor that is no longer at my school. :disappointed_relieved:

I’d appreciate any advice.

Looks like 2x boost converters, 2x constant current boost/buck converters, 1x relay and 4 current sensors for modules. Could you attach better quality pictures? *Of both sides of the PCB. **Looking at the pictures below it has 1x LM2596S buck converter, 1x XL6009 boost converter, 2x LM2596S, LM2577S constant current boost/buck converters, 1x relay and 4 current sensors for modules.

None of those boost, buck or boost/buck modules will handle the power of the 400W turbine or 100W solar panel. Those modules are only rated for 15W without heatsinks, I wouldn't push them over 25W even with heatsinks. Did you receive the controllers and the code that went with this board?

We did not receive the controller.

Pdf of the code is attached.

Arduino_code.pdf (197 KB)