My skybox is magic!

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Dforster
Forum Whiz
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:11 am
My RE system: Outback skybox

My skybox is magic!

Post by Dforster »

According to the skybox and OpticsRE, my skybox is producing its own energy!

But since that's not possible, I think something is a little off. The OpticsRE and skybox panel both show the grid is zeroed but that I am using about 1.5kw currently. and its dark so no solar production.

Most likely what's happened is my CT's aren't working right. and I'm sure that's going to cause other problems that I don't know about.

I ordered (and paid dearly for) the Outback CT's but Solaris sent me some much cheaper acuenergy CT's that seem to have the same or similar specs,. I changed the settings to custom and left the rest the same, (2000 turns, phase shift 0, and 200 amps capacity).

It's also showing that I have sold a small amount, which I do not want to do. I have the Skybox set to non-export.

I think I will first try turning off the CT setting and see if the grid readings straighten out. But thought I'd ask here to see if there is any feedback.

Thanks!
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2021-04-11 20_17_34-OPTICSRE.png
Mike Curran
Forum Emperor
Posts: 2274
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:28 pm
My RE system: Outback - Garage roof:
- 8 (2x4) Evergreen 180's into one FM80 (2007/2020 - replaced MX60)
- 6 (2×3) ALEO S79-300's into one FM80 (2017)
- 2 grid-tied VFXR3524A-01's series stacked, replaced GVFX's (2020)
- 12 Surrette/Rolls 2V x 1766Ah (2007)
- Hub10.3, Mate3s, FNDC, RTS. Tigo ES maximizers on each PV module.

Westinghouse Solar - Barn roof: (2012)
- 30 (2x15) 235W panels with Enphase M215 microinverters, grid-tied

Outback Skybox - Barn roof: (2019)
- 14 Talesun 275W in series (DC array input to SB inverter/charger)
- 3 SimpliPhi 3.8 batteries, 48V, 225Ah total
- AC coupled input from 14 Talesun 275W, Enphase M215 microinverters

All self-designed and self-installed
Location: Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Mike Curran »

I had a similar issue with my Skybox showing high grid use at night. If your grid AC waveform is distorted in any way, the difference between it and Skybox's "perfect" sinusoidal output will cause a false grid use indication. See this thread for more detail: viewtopic.php?f=47&t=16000&hilit=Final
https://smart.tigoenergy.com/p/pZXn7SZQyO45?date=2021-04-19
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221
Dforster
Forum Whiz
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:11 am
My RE system: Outback skybox

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Dforster »

I will read up on that. It was working perfect when I turned it on for the first time Saturday. Then when I started using the accuenergy external cts on the grid inputs it worked for a while and then it seemed to start acting weird and showing zero grid. The grid current does change but doesn’t match my readings from my emporia vue or my clamp on meter.

Even when I turned off the cts in the setup it didn’t go back to matching the emporia.

But the graph output does seem to make sense. And also on the skybox when I click the grid tile it seems to make sense and matches the emporia somewhat. It’s just the dashboard on the opticsre and the main screen on the skybox that’s wrong.
Mike Curran
Forum Emperor
Posts: 2274
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:28 pm
My RE system: Outback - Garage roof:
- 8 (2x4) Evergreen 180's into one FM80 (2007/2020 - replaced MX60)
- 6 (2×3) ALEO S79-300's into one FM80 (2017)
- 2 grid-tied VFXR3524A-01's series stacked, replaced GVFX's (2020)
- 12 Surrette/Rolls 2V x 1766Ah (2007)
- Hub10.3, Mate3s, FNDC, RTS. Tigo ES maximizers on each PV module.

Westinghouse Solar - Barn roof: (2012)
- 30 (2x15) 235W panels with Enphase M215 microinverters, grid-tied

Outback Skybox - Barn roof: (2019)
- 14 Talesun 275W in series (DC array input to SB inverter/charger)
- 3 SimpliPhi 3.8 batteries, 48V, 225Ah total
- AC coupled input from 14 Talesun 275W, Enphase M215 microinverters

All self-designed and self-installed
Location: Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Mike Curran »

It’s just the dashboard on the opticsre and the main screen on the skybox that’s wrong.
In my case, my clamp-on ammeter did match everything else, so your issue most likely isn't the same as mine was.
https://smart.tigoenergy.com/p/pZXn7SZQyO45?date=2021-04-19
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221
Dforster
Forum Whiz
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:11 am
My RE system: Outback skybox

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Dforster »

Yeah my main screen on the skybox and the opticsre dashboard are the only things that don’t make sense or match my clamp on ct.

I wonder if having the external ct right above the emporia ct would mess up the readings.
Mike Curran
Forum Emperor
Posts: 2274
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:28 pm
My RE system: Outback - Garage roof:
- 8 (2x4) Evergreen 180's into one FM80 (2007/2020 - replaced MX60)
- 6 (2×3) ALEO S79-300's into one FM80 (2017)
- 2 grid-tied VFXR3524A-01's series stacked, replaced GVFX's (2020)
- 12 Surrette/Rolls 2V x 1766Ah (2007)
- Hub10.3, Mate3s, FNDC, RTS. Tigo ES maximizers on each PV module.

Westinghouse Solar - Barn roof: (2012)
- 30 (2x15) 235W panels with Enphase M215 microinverters, grid-tied

Outback Skybox - Barn roof: (2019)
- 14 Talesun 275W in series (DC array input to SB inverter/charger)
- 3 SimpliPhi 3.8 batteries, 48V, 225Ah total
- AC coupled input from 14 Talesun 275W, Enphase M215 microinverters

All self-designed and self-installed
Location: Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Mike Curran »

I wonder if having the external ct right above the emporia ct would mess up the readings.
If they're on the same conductor with nothing in between, they should read the same current. If they're reading different then there's something bogus with the setup of one or the other of them.
https://smart.tigoenergy.com/p/pZXn7SZQyO45?date=2021-04-19
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221
Dforster
Forum Whiz
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:11 am
My RE system: Outback skybox

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Dforster »

Well it hasn’t been showing the weird zero grid and zero solar with a load anymore.

It doesn’t quite all add up all the time. Maybe it’s all within the margins off error of the cts. I’ll have to investigate further. And maybe compare the poco consumption with the skybox and see how close they are.

I think it will work better when I get my batteries connected. I’ve got it set to non export and have been told that setting won’t work properly without batteries. But it’s all I can do right now as I can’t export.
Brian_B
Forum Member
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Jan 29, 2021 8:33 am
My RE system: Skybox
3.25kW Canadian Solar
40kWh Samsung SDI
Predator 8.25kW Gas Backup

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Brian_B »

Dforster wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 8:00 pm Well it hasn’t been showing the weird zero grid and zero solar with a load anymore.

It doesn’t quite all add up all the time. Maybe it’s all within the margins off error of the cts. I’ll have to investigate further. And maybe compare the poco consumption with the skybox and see how close they are.

I think it will work better when I get my batteries connected. I’ve got it set to non export and have been told that setting won’t work properly without batteries. But it’s all I can do right now as I can’t export.
I think it has more to do with update rates. Not all the tiles update at the same rate, so mismatches are usually because one is still showing older information. The Skybox HMI isn't very fast, especially when it comes to updating the main page with the graphics. There are times when output will just get stuck, Grid Zeroed is common. It usually self-corrects after a while, but you can often force it by rebooting (although that will cycle your loads).

I've found that connecting remotely to the HMI can be faster than the local HMI display. Optics tends to just mirror what you see on the main HMI page, but refreshes much more slowly.

There's also the matter of parasitic load - Skybox takes a bit to self-power, you are always going to see anywhere from 100-300W of power just disappear, because that's what Skybox is using to power itself.

The HMI, and Optics, are much better served looking at hourly averages - those are fairly accurate. And if you go to the specific tiles on the HMI, where you can see the daily graphs, those usually show accurate instantaneous values, even if the Main page is stuck. You just can't see the various values next to each other that way...
Dforster
Forum Whiz
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:11 am
My RE system: Outback skybox

Re: My skybox is magic!

Post by Dforster »

Brian_B wrote: Fri Apr 16, 2021 9:05 am
I think it has more to do with update rates. Not all the tiles update at the same rate, so mismatches are usually because one is still showing older information. The Skybox HMI isn't very fast, especially when it comes to updating the main page with the graphics. There are times when output will just get stuck, Grid Zeroed is common. It usually self-corrects after a while, but you can often force it by rebooting (although that will cycle your loads).

I've found that connecting remotely to the HMI can be faster than the local HMI display. Optics tends to just mirror what you see on the main HMI page, but refreshes much more slowly.

There's also the matter of parasitic load - Skybox takes a bit to self-power, you are always going to see anywhere from 100-300W of power just disappear, because that's what Skybox is using to power itself.

The HMI, and Optics, are much better served looking at hourly averages - those are fairly accurate. And if you go to the specific tiles on the HMI, where you can see the daily graphs, those usually show accurate instantaneous values, even if the Main page is stuck. You just can't see the various values next to each other that way...
[/quote]

Never got to thank you for all your input here. I've had some time to play around with things. It's behaving as expected with the slow updates, etc as you mention. Its not really a problem, that was just my first day to turn it on and I didn't know what to expect.

I still am not matching up perfectly with the PoCo usage (and it's normally in their favor!). I'd like to figure that out eventually. Maybe skybox and the Poco are using different hours to define a "day"
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