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Why Add An Isolation Transformer To Your Solar System?

The isolation transformer protects your household appliances, precision instruments (medical or industrial grade), energy storage systems (batteries), and other electrical equipment.

It is usually installed inside the inverter product in the entire solar system.

The importance of isolation transformers in solar energy storage systems

The inverter is the core machine that converts DC power from solar panels or batteries into AC power and outputs it to your electrical equipment.

In such a core configuration, the isolation transformer inside is particularly critical.

This article will elaborate on the working principle, application scenarios, and what will happen if there is no isolation transformer.

Let you know more about choosing a suitable solar system or single product for DIY.

PVMars Off grid solar power system drawing

How does an isolation transformer protect your appliances?

If you want to use power from the utility grid to charge an energy storage system (battery) when there is not enough sunlight (solar power).

First of all PVMars’ inverter allows a diesel generator or city grid power to replace solar energy to charge the battery. But what needs to be determined is whether your local mains power is stable.

If there are frequent power outages (there are only 4-6 hours of mains power supply a day), it is very necessary to add an isolation transformer to your solar system.

On grid solar system for home, factory, farm use

An isolation transformer is completely electrically isolated between the input end (mains – charging battery) and the output end (electrical equipment – load). ​

The transformer isolates the input and output circuits through magnetic field coupling by using electromagnetic induction. There is no connection between the circuits at the input and output. Only energy is transferred via the transformer’s magnetic field.

Therefore, the isolation transformer can effectively isolate electrical interference between the input and the output terminal.

This ensures the stability of the voltage and current at the output terminal.

Isolation transformer work

That is to say, once your utility grid suddenly loses power or the voltage frequency is unstable, the isolation transformer will isolate this unstable electromagnetic interference.

So that it does not affect the current transmission from the output end to the battery. It also does not affect the operation of your air conditioners, refrigerators, packaging machines, surgical instruments, lights, and other electrical equipment.

It can also extend the service life of electrical equipment and energy storage systems (batteries).

Reducing the cost of secondary consumable purchases (lights, air conditioners, refrigerators, etc.).

Even though adding an isolation transformer will increase the initial investment in the solar system, it is still quite cost-effective and valuable compared to the cumulative cost of long-term use in the next 6, 10, and 15 years.

What happens if an isolation transformer is not used?

PVMars’ inverters are available in high-frequency and industrial frequency (low-frequency) options.

The high-frequency inverter does not have an isolation transformer, which is one of its advantages of being light and easy to install.

High frequency inverter internal structure

Because it uses high-frequency switching technology to replace rectifiers and isolation transformers with high-frequency switching components, it does not look bulky in appearance, is more fashionable, and is relatively cheap.

Don't forget to pay attention to:

1-There is a high-frequency current in its output neutral line, mainly from the harmonic interference of the mains power grid, the pulsating current of the rectifier and high-frequency inverter, the harmonic interference of the load, etc. The interference voltage is high and difficult to eliminate.

2-Since the high-frequency inverter does not have an isolation transformer for electrical interference isolation, once the inverter power device is short-circuited, the high DC voltage on the DC bus is directly added to your load (air conditioner, refrigerator, lamp, precision instrument, etc.), which could cause your load to malfunction, creating a safety hazard (such as a fire).

3-The high-frequency inverter has a weak load capacity and cannot drive refrigerators, water pumps, air conditioners, and other inductive electrical equipment. Even if it could be driven, the internal components of the inverter may burn.

Therefore, if you do not need the public utility grid to supplement the energy storage system (battery), and there are no inductive loads such as air conditioners, refrigerators, and motors.

High-frequency inverters can still supply lights, computers, TVs, and other electrical equipment.

Otherwise, PVMars Solar Company recommends an isolation transformer, which is the most cost-effective and safest option.

What are the specific application scenarios for isolation transformers?

Various laboratories

Laboratory measurement and experimental equipment usually require stable and clean power, and isolation transformers are used here to provide such power and protect the equipment from external interference.

Factory industrial automation

In automatic control systems, isolation transformers are used to isolate control systems and high-power equipment to prevent electrical noise from interfering with precision control signals.

Hospital medical equipment

For example, operating room equipment and life support systems often require power supplies with high safety standards.

PVMars’ 15kw solar energy storage system at a Somali hospital also included an isolation transformer. It is used here to ensure patient, medical staff, and equipment safety.

PVMars solar power system supply free energy for hospital

Sound system

In high-quality audio systems, isolation transformers are often used to isolate the ground loop and remove power line noise.

Computer network

In data centers and server rooms, isolation transformers isolate critical equipment and protect them from electrical interference and power problems.

Large shopping malls and hotels

Such places use large amounts of air conditioning, high-quality security systems, etc. PVMars’ 100kw solar system also installed isolation transformers to back powerful transmission of current for hotels in Saipan.

Ensure that guests coming and going can play safely, freely, and happily.

Saipan hotel use 100kw solar system save high electricity bills

The above is a detailed description of an isolation transformer. I hope this information will help you choose which solar system to use in the future.

If you, as an electrician, need to install or maintain an isolation transformer, it is imperative to follow the instructions we provide.

You should make sure you understand the operation and working principles of the equipment. Also, make sure you use the right high-quality inverter for the right occasion.

Aaron with a strong background in applied physics and a degree from the renowned University of London, I am excited to join PVMARS Solar Energy Company’s technical research and development department. Passionate about solar energy storage technology, I have conducted in-depth research in this field and am currently involved in the development of innovative energy storage solutions.

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PVMARS Solar will set up 120 energy user service centers around the world. It will provide on-site investigation, design drawings, solar energy storage system solutions, transportation of goods, assist you to import solar energy storage system, installation services, and continue to cooperate with local engineers, exclusive agents and foreign merchants.

We sincerely hope to work with like-minded partners. Win-win cooperation to achieve harmonious coexistence between mankind and nature.

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