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Can a 10 watt solar panel giving off 20V DC directly power a flywheel motor assembly with a 12V DC motor? Answered

I am doing a science fair project that involves a solar panel, connected to a charge controller, connected to a 12V battery, connected to a switch system that can either go to a flywheel with a 12V DC motor or straight to a DC to AC inverter which leads to light standard light bulbs. The system worked (light bulbs lit) when I connected the panel to the controller to the battery to the inverter. However, when I had the battery power the flywheel and then have the flywheel output its energy to the inverter, the inverter shut down and would not work (red alarm went off). The flywheel is producing more than 10V (starts at about 11V) for at least 30 seconds, and the inverter's low voltage shut down in 10.5 plus or minus 5 volts. So why doesn't it work? Is the inverter messed up or is the flywheel outputing AC power? Also, when I connected the solar panel to the charge controller to the flywheel, the charge controller completely shut off. Are charge controllers not able to be directly linked to motors? And if I tried to directly connect the solar panel (which has 20V) to the flywheel (with a 12V motor), without a charge controller in between, what would happen?


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10 years ago

You should almost certainly be regulating the voltage down to 12V or not much more than that. You may also need to be filtering it to continuous rather than pulsating DC.

And, yeah, you should make darned sure that the flywheel generator is producing 12V DC of the right polarity.

Feed the inverter what it was designed to work with. Anything else and it will complain, shut down, or (if you get it really wrong) fry itself.