2023 NEC Poetry Reading Article 690 Part 2 Circuit Requirements

• October 5th, 2022
The 2023 NEC has been released and it is time to see how voltage, current and rapid shutdown look in the future!
 
2023 690 Part 2 includes:
 
690.7 Voltage
690.8 Current
690.9 OCPD
690.11 DC Arc Fault Protection
690.12 Rapid Shutdown
 
Reading the NEC can be heavy stuff, so if you do not get it the first time around, try listening to it backwards synced with Dark Side of the Moon. Then you will get the secret meaning.
 
Learn more and take happy classes on deciphering the Code at www.solarSEAN.com or www.HeatSpring.com/sean

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UL 3741 Rapid Shutdown solution where the PV array can stay up to 1000V using SMA inverters with Sollega or Ironridge racks!

• September 21st, 2022

Rapid Shutdown has traditionally meant putting module level power electronics in the array for PV systems on buildings. There has always been this part of the NEC 690.12(B)(2)(1) that gave you an option to comply with rapid shutdown inside the array with a listed hazard control system. Surprisingly, we can now go back to having something to what rapid shutdown used to be in the 2014 NEC, which we called array level rapid shutdown. Let’s see if someone gets something like this listed for a residential roof.

 

Links:

https://www.sma-america.com/newsroom/current-news/news-details/news/5123-sma-america-and-sollega-partner-to-debut-the-first-ul-3741-pvhcs-certified-commercial-and-indus.html

https://files.ironridge.com/flat-roof-mounting/resources/brochures/IronRidge_BX_System_UL3741_Installation_Addendum.pdf

https://solarbuildermag.com/featured/ul-3741-rooftop-pv-system-complies-with-nec-690-12-without-mlpe/

 

To see a visual version, take these classes at www.HeatSpring.com/sean 

40-Hour NABCEP Advanced PV Certification Training and CEUS

30-Hour NABCEP Advanced PV Certification Training and CEUS

2020 NEC PV, Energy Storage, Building and Fire Codes for PV System Inspectors

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Radio 690! 2023 NEC 690 PV Systems Part 1

• September 8th, 2022
Every time the NEC comes out, I do a reading of my favorite NEC articles. I like to think of it as sort of a poetry reading, since I will try to make it as least dry (wet) as possible. This time I am going to give some commentary, so it is up to you to figure out what is Code and what is me interpreting and making Code fun by understanding the tone of my voice.
 
Here is where you can get free access to the 2023 NEC from the NFPA website:
 
This podcast is 690 Part 1 General, so stay tuned for more 690 Parts and more 2023 NEC articles, such as 2023 NEC 706 and more!!
 
Here are a few of the new things happening here in 2023 NEC 690 Part 1:
  • We can now say string! Before it was a PV source circuit (and it still is).
  • Floatovoltaics: Yes we have mention of special requirements for floating PV, which sort of reminds me of my and Bill's Sailboat. Now you can put boating on your PV resume.
  • I describe some images so you can get the audio version of the visual, which is good brain exercise and prevents alzheimers
 
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Sean Gets interviewed on the Clean Power Hour Podcast

• July 20th, 2022
This is a re-posting of a podcast where Sean White is interviewed by Tim Montegue on the Clean Power Hour Podcast.
 
If you have not already, be sure to save the Clean Power Hour podcast to your favorites. Tim is very active and has all kinds of experts on his podcast, including Jigar Shaw of the Department of Energy (Episode 83). I was honored to be interviewed on the Clean Power Hour and listen to the Clean Power Hour religiously.
 
Tim took my NABCEP PV Technical Sales Course at HeatSpring, so if it is good enough for Tim, it is good enough for you!

 

Show Notes From Clean Power Hour:

Get a 15% discount to attend Midwest Solar Expo with discount code: CPH15. www.MidwestSolarExpo.com/, the premier B2B solar and clean energy event in the region.

As innovation in solar chugs along and consumer perception climbs and falls, one thing is true.  New terminology – with accompanying acronyms – appears almost daily right now in solar industry.  From “solar economics” to “virtual power plants (VPP) ” to “frequency regulation” and “vehicle to grid (V2G),” these terms are the future of solar.  And solar is climbing high.

Sean White is an award-winning solar photovoltaic (PV) professor, master trainer, solar contractor and author of several books, including Solar Photovoltaic Basics, Solar PV Engineering and Installation, PV Technical Sales, PV and the NEC and Energy Storage Basics.  

On this episode of Clean Power Hour, Sean joins Tim to talk about important milestones in the history of solar technology from its inception in the 1950’s to its maturity today.  They discuss solar energy storage, bidirectional car batteries, self-consumption systems, V2G, VPPs, getting to cash positive, plus details on important upcoming industry conferences.

Listen in to bring that expertise to the forefront to tackle any business challenge, hire new talent, acquire new business and so much more.

Key Takeaways

Milestones in PV cell development from its invention in 1954 to one gigawatt installed worldwide in 2000 to one terawatt installed worldwide in 2022 

How the price adoption curve has played a major role in the solar industry

How battery size and availability introduce the new frontier of solar: “solar plus storage” 

Why California has half of solar energy production and its likely status-change to a “self-consumption system” in the very near future

Sean’s predicted boom of self-consumption systems and how the “price is right” for bidirectional batteries in electric vehicles 

The essential missing piece that is the main barrier to V2G technology

Which mainstream car company is actively working on a V2G-ready car

How solar energy will become economical in 5-10 years

Why energy storage can assist with “frequency regulation” (injecting extra power into the grid or holding back when necessary)

How the “solar coaster” came to be and why solar could be the next massive money-maker

How utilities pushing back sends consumers migrating off grid

Connect with Sean

SolarSEAN.com

Sean on LinkedIn

Books by Sean

White House Solar 

Connect with Tim  

Clean Power Hour  

Clean Power Hour on YouTube

Tim on Twitter

Tim on LinkedIn 

Email tgmontague@gmail.com 

Review Clean Power Hour on Apple Podcasts

Resources 

HeatSpring.com

Grid Alternatives

RE+ Southeast Conference, May 11-12, 2022

Re+ Conference, September 19-22, 2022

InterSolar North America Conference, February 14-16, 2023

RE+ Northeast Confe

The Clean Power Hour is produced by the Clean Power Consulting Group and created by Tim Montague. Please subscribe on your favorite audio platform and on Youtube: bit.ly/cph-sub | www.CleanPowerHour.com | contact us by email:  CleanPowerHour@gmail.com | Speeding the energy transition!

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2023 NEC preview with Bill Brooks at Intersolar 2022 Part 3

• June 15th, 2022

Some of the areas of the NEC that we cover in this podcast are:

NEC Article 702 Optional Standby Systems, Load Control, Disconnecting Means, UL 1741 for Power Control Systems, 706.15 Location Control for 1 and 2-family Dwellings

Quotes: Bill Brooks (soon to be famous quotes).

“Tesla, Enphase, SolarEdge, are all getting listed as energy management systems.”

“You will damage most generators if you run out of fuel under load.”

“Hey Siri, turn off my ESS.”

“Here’s what happened in the 2023 Code.”

“706.15 Location Control for 1- and 2-Family Dwellings, an ESS shall include an emergency shutdown function to cease the export of power from the ESS to the premises wiring of other systems.”

“You could have a device that could have rapid shutdown and ESS emergency shutdown” “you could use the same switch”

This is a recording of part of an NEC workshop at the Intersolar 2022 conference at the Long Beach California Convention Center in January 2022.

 

The workshop was titled:
Energy Storage, PV and the NEC.

 

Bill Brooks is instrumental in the process of coming up with material for the NEC for renewable energy systems, especially for solar, energy storage and interconnections. Although the 2023 NEC has not been finalized or published, this is as good of a preview as you can get for knowing what the future will bring. Many manufacturers, engineers, CEOs and other decisionmakers can make better informed decisions about the future, knowing what will be in the National Electrical Code.

Bill Brooks is on NEC Code Making Panel 4 (the alternative energy panel) and has been perhaps the most active member of the PV Industry Forum, which is where new material for the NEC for Solar PV, Energy Storage and Interconnections are made. Bill has been working on Codes and Standards for 34 years. Bill Brooks and Sean White also published the book PV and the NEC.

Note: This podcast was recorded on an iPhone 13 and to my surprise the recording quality was way better than expected, so we decided to podcast it!

WARNING: Bill Brooks and Sean White sometimes think they are funny. If you disagree with this and do not like dad jokes, do not listen to this podcast.

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2023 NEC preview with Bill Brooks at Intersolar 2022 Part 2

• June 1st, 2022

Some of the areas of the NEC that we cover in this podcast are:

Ground Fault Protection, Ground Fault Detection and interruption (GFDI) term clarified (not to be confused with GFCI), 690.45 Equipment Grounding Conductors (EGC) includes DC and AC not having to increase size of EGC when upsizing current carrying conductor for voltage drop (now also applies to AC PV and modifies NEC 250.122), 250.122 EGC sized based on OCPD, Microgrid Interconnect Device (MID), Interactive Mode vs. Voltage Mode, putting multiple inverters prior to the first OCPD, 705.13 Power Control Systems (PCS) was changed to Energy Management Systems (EMS), EMS was previously just for loads, Tesla Powerwall, PCS is not the part of the EMS that is controlling sources, Batteries as Source and Load, EVs Article 625, and more!

Quotes: Bill Brooks (soon to be famous quotes).

“Changes in size for voltage drop do not have to increase the size of the equipment grounding conductor”

“It’s penalizing you for doing the right thing” Bill on 250.122 upsizing the EGC for voltage drop."

“All we’ve done is we’ve taken the microgrid interconnect device and stuck it inside the inverter” Bill on multimode inverter with 2 AC outputs."

“We could have a system that was 50kW going into a 100A service.” 

“We have large systems right now, that have a 5MW interconnection that have a 30 PV array on them.” 

“You can run a 400A feed to a large EV charging area, you can put 20 cars on it.” “The controller would never allow you to draw more than 400A.”

“You have a controller that prevents the conductors from receiving too much current.”

“At the end of the day, the NEC is all about safety. It’s all about, we do not burn buildings down with correctly installed electrical equipment.”

This is a recording of part of an NEC workshop at the Intersolar 2022 conference at the Long Beach California Convention Center in January 2022.

 

The workshop was titled:

Energy Storage, PV and the NEC.

 

Bill Brooks is instrumental in the process of coming up with material for the NEC for renewable energy systems, especially for solar, energy storage and interconnections. Although the 2023 NEC has not been finalized or published, this is as good of a preview as you can get for knowing what the future will bring. Many manufacturers, engineers, CEOs and other decisionmakers can make better informed decisions about the future, knowing what will be in the National Electrical Code.

Bill Brooks is on NEC Code Making Panel 4 (the alternative energy panel) and has been perhaps the most active member of the PV Industry Forum, which is where new material for the NEC for Solar PV, Energy Storage and Interconnections are made. Bill has been working on Codes and Standards for 34 years. Bill Brooks and Sean White also published the book PV and the NEC.

Note: This podcast was recorded on an iPhone 13 and to my surprise the recording quality was way better than expected, so we decided to podcast it!

WARNING: Bill Brooks and Sean White sometimes think they are funny. If you disagree with this and do not like dad jokes, do not listen to this podcast.

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2023 NEC preview with Bill Brooks at Intersolar 2022 Part 1

• May 17th, 2022

Bill Brooks is instrumental in the process of coming up with material for the NEC for renewable energy systems, especially for solar, energy storage and interconnections. Although the 2023 NEC has not been finalized or published, this is as good of a preview as you can get for knowing what the future will bring. Many manufacturers, engineers, CEOs and other decisionmakers can make better informed decisions about the future, knowing what will be in the National Electrical Code.

Bill Brooks is on NEC Code Making Panel 4 (the alternative energy panel) and has been perhaps the most active member of the PV Industry Forum, which is where new material for the NEC for Solar PV, Energy Storage and Interconnections are made. Bill has been working on Codes and Standards for 34 years. Bill Brooks and Sean White also published the book PV and the NEC.

Some of the areas of the NEC that we cover in this podcast are:

NEC Article 100 Definitions. All definitions moving to article 100 (no more 690.2 definitions), Electronic Power Converter, Electronic Transformer, Inverter Definition, PV Hazard Control UL 3741, Rapid Shutdown, 690.4, 690.12, NEC 750 Energy Management Systems (EMS), NEC 705.13 Power Control Systems (PCS), Net-Metering 3.0 Protest, NEC 712 DC Microgrids removed from the NEC and you use 705, PV String Circuits (strings now in NEC for first time), PV Output Circuit removed, PV System Output Circuit, Recombiner (Bill is not fond of this term), Paralleling Circuits in Harnesses, First Solar Modules, 2023 NEC PV Source Circuits go into and out of DC Combiner, String Circuit is series only (not parallel), DC-to-DC Converter Circuit, Wild PV, PV System Disconnect, 690.15 reorganized, Locking Requirements, Ground Fault Protection, Ground Fault Detection and interruption (GFDI) term clarified (not to be confused with GFCI), 690.45 Equipment Grounding Conductors (EGC) includes DC and AC not having to increase size of EGC when upsizing current carrying conductor for voltage drop (now also applies to AC).

Quotes: Bill Brooks (soon to be famous quotes).

“When you see a change in the Code, it does not mean that the requirements change.”

“90% of changes in the Code are not changes in requirements”

“We will never make a Code that will be clear to everyone”

“Codes are using text to convey fairly complex concepts to the public”

“Energy Management Systems (EMS) was unified with other parts of the Code”

“NEC Code Making Panel 4 is referred to now as the alternative energy panel”

“They’re putting maintenance requirements into a construction code”

“We got PV string circuits into the NEC”

“SolarEdge can put 100 PV modules on a Circuit”

This is a recording of part of an NEC workshop at the Intersolar 2022 conference at the Long Beach California Convention Center in January 2022.

 

The workshop was titled:

Energy Storage, PV and the NEC.

 

Note: This podcast was recorded on an iPhone 13 and to my surprise the recording quality was way better than expected, so we decided to podcast it!

WARNING: Bill Brooks and Sean White sometimes think they are funny. If you disagree with this and do not like dad jokes, do not listen to this podcast.

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Keith Cronin: Solar MBA instructor on HeatSpring!

• March 8th, 2022

Keith CroninSolar MBA instructor on HeatSpring!

 

Keith sold his Hawaii solar company Island Energy Solutions to Jigar Shaw of SunEdison in 2007 after knowing Jigar since 2002. 

 

Keith has been teaching his Solar MBA class for just over a decade with co-instructor and attorney Chris Lord. They have taught many students, including oil and gas refugees. 

 

Keith Cronin does consulting via his company Sun Hedge with clients all over the world, including the Department of Defense.  He has lived in many different countries throughout his solar career. 

 

Listening to this podcast will give you insight into the process for developing large solar projects and systems to run your growing business. 

 

Final wise words from Keith Cronin:

  1. Fail more quickly
  2. Stumble ahead
  3. Don’t be afraid
  4. Ask questions
  5. Learn from others and you’ll be glad you did!

Click here to find out more about Keith Cronin’s classes!

 

Make sure to stop by www.SolarSEAN.com for a life altering experience! Knowledge is power and power times time is energy!

 

Thanks,

Sean

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Pre-Celebrating 1TW of PV installed in 2022

• January 19th, 2022
Welcome to 2022, the year of the Terawatt! That's right, this year will cross the trillion watt mark!
 
2022 will be remembered as the year that humanity reached the magic number of 1 trillion watts, aka 1 terawatt or 1TW of solar installed since the beginning of time. We do not have to take into consideration the amount of solar taken out of service, since that is so low, it probably will be replaced in less than a month, so that means we will hit the milestone of installed 1TW since 1 million BC and we will also have 1TW that is installed and working every day.
 
1TW = 1000GW = a million megawatts!
 
According to a July 2021 article titles "Solar continues to break installation records, on track for Terawatt scale by 2022" by Solar Power Europe, Earth will hit 900 GW in 2021, 1.1 TW in 2022, 1.3 TW in 2023, 1.6 TW in 2023, and 1.8 TW in 2025. 
 
At a world population of 7.9 Billion, we are close to hitting another milestone too. 
 
To put a trillion watts into context, the nuclear power plant at Chernobyl was 1GW, so the power output of 1000 Chernobyls is about equal to the power output of solar on Earth sometime in 2022. There are a little over 2TW of coal plants operating in the world right now, so we are not there yet. I also do not want to fool you and have to mention that coal and nuclear do work at night, so we need more solar to make up for that, along with energy storage and high voltage DC lines across time zones, which is more easily engineered physically than politically. Can you imagine Middle America allowing the East and West Coasts sharing daylight electricity via power lines through their states? Perhaps we will have to stick to energy storage right now. 
 
I once saw a presentation by Dr. Shi who was the founder of Suntech in China, where he pointed out that we could have high voltage dc (HVDC) power lines that circle the globe. The pathway would be from South Africa, up to Eurasia and then across the Bering Straits to Alaska and down to Argentina. Once climate change hits, perhaps we can also have an HVDC extension to the green pastures of Antartica!
 
To put HVDC into context and using 1 million volts as an example, we would be able to carry a MW with 1 Amp! We would be able to carry a GW, which is all of the power that Chernobyl could produce with 1000A. There are many homes that are wired for 100A and many buildings that are wired for well over 1000A. Depending on your source, the largest PV project in the world is about 1GW, so now putting that into wire sizing terms, you can easily transport a GW using wire tables in the NEC (utilities do not have to follow the NEC and can size their wires smaller). 
 
The reason that HVDC is the perfect way to carry large amounts of power over long distances, is because Voltage x Current = Power, so with high voltage, you need much less current for the same amount of power and current is what heats up a wire, not voltage. The reason that we do not use high voltage in our houses is because high voltage is sparky.
 
Go to www.SolarSEAN.com to find out more!
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Net-metering, bypass diodes, solar & storage and NEC Article 480 vs. Article 706 Q&As

• December 15th, 2021
In this question we have the following questions and answers:
 
1. Net metering: Why it is different in different places whether or not you can and should feed energy back to the grid when you have an excess.
 
2. How bypass diodes work and also with half-cell PV modules.
 
3. Why solar goes so well with energy storage systems (ESS).
 
4. National Electrical Code (NEC) articles 480 Storage Batteries vs. 706 Energy Storage Systems and why you should use 706
 
For more info, go to www.solarSEAN.com
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