How Does a Solar Water Pump Work？
A solar water pump system is commonly seen in residential and commercial uses, as well as for irrigation of agricultural land. Through solar panels, the pump can eliminate the cost of energy and provide a more feasible option that uses energy from the sun (and not fuel-burning mechanisms) for pumping water. The following is the specific working principle of the solar water pump.
Solar water pumps are specially designed to utilize DC electricity from solar panels. The pumps must work during low light conditions, when power is reduced, without stalling or overheating. Low volume pumps use positive displacement (volumetric) mechanisms that seal water in cavities and force it upward. Lift capacity is maintained even while pumping slowly.
These mechanisms include the diaphragm, vane, and piston pumps. These differ from a conventional centrifugal pump that needs to spin fast to work efficiently. Centrifugal pumps are used where higher volumes are required.
A solar-powered surface water pump is one that is mounted at ground level. Surface pumps work well when they draw water through suction less than 10 or 20 feet. A submersible pump is one that is lowered into the water. Most deep wells use submersible pumps.
A solar water pump controller (which is a linear current booster) is an electronic device used with most solar pumps. It acts like an automatic transmission, helping the pump to start and keeps it from stalling in weak sunlight. Some controllers also have additional features such as offering a terminal for the float switch to shut off the pump when a storage tank is full and protection for overvoltage conditions.
A solar tracker may be used to tilt the PV array as the sun moves across the sky during the day. This can increase daily energy gain by as much as 55%. With more hours of peak sun, a smaller pump and power system may be used. Tracking works best in clear sunny weather. It is less effective in cloudy climates and on short winter days.
However, in the last several years the cost of solar panels has come down so much that it is usually more cost-effective to add more solar panels than to add a tracker. Additionally, since the tracker has moving parts it will tend to need repair after several years.
Storage is important. Three to ten days’ storage may be required, depending on climate and water usage.
Most systems use water storage tanks for simplicity and economy. In other cases, batteries can be added to the system.
Electrical energy from the solar modules is stored in the deep-cycle batteries so that the pump can run at non-sunny times. Add a float switch to the system which can turn the pump off when the water tank fills to prevent overflow.
Windmills used to pump water in the “old” days, can still be seen on many horizons. More recently solar pumps have replaced windmills in water pumping applications. A small solar system turns out to be less expensive and much easier to install and maintain.
The solar panels also provide a more consistent supply of water, and they can be installed in valleys and wooded areas where wind exposure is poor. A PV array may be placed some distance away from the pump itself; even several hundred feet (100 m) away.
Only when we understand the working principle of solar-powered water pumps, we can use it more accurately. If you still don’t know much about the working principle of solar water pumps after reading the above content, or you want to know more about this, you can contact us for related solutions.
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