Battery charging by an automatic dual-axis solar tracking system
Solar panels with fixed installation or single-axis solar trackers which can track only the sun altitude may not be able to store the energy efficiently, especially when the sun azimuth angle changes from season to season. The aim of this research is to design an azimuth-altitude dual axis tracker. The light intensity of the sun is measured by 4 light dependent resistors (LDR), mounted on each edge of the solar panel at the centre position. The tracking range can be set up from the depths of the variable resistors which are installed in black, rubber tubes. The measured light intensity is sent to the microcontroller PIC16F877-20P for controlling the DC motors and rotating the solar panel to the point where the maximum light intensity is. From the experimental results, it was found that the average response time of the tracker was 11.7 degrees per second. By using a 12-volt, 120-watt solar panel with a 12-volt, 120 ampere-hour battery, it was found that the energy stored by the developed solar tracker increased by 21.27 watts, or equivalently to 17.72 percent, in comparison to a solar panel with fixed installation.
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