Using The PowerFilm 30 Watt Flexible Solar Panel The Powerfilm made for lightweight expeditions
by Powerfilm Solar (F15-1800)
What's special about this panel?
The Powerfilm F15-1800 30 Watt folding solar panel is used by field research, expeditions, and campers who need more than a trickle charger. It produces 30 Watts of power in full sun. In summer months, you can expect to collect between 60 & 120 Watt-Hours of power, which is enough to run most laptops for 3-6 hours. Lightweight & very easy to pack, with corner grommets that make it simple to secure.
How do I use this panel?
Direct-Connection to Your Devices
Plug into the F15-1800 30 watt pane using the included 12V CLA connector. This is the same type of socket as in your car, so most devices with car adaptors can be plugged directly into the panel.
Connect via Solar Storage Battery
Always recommended, this 30 Watt panel can be connected to most 12V solar storage batteries. Doing this allows you to collect the power you generate during the day for use anytime... even at night when most people do their daily device charging duties. See recommended storage battery options below.
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About Smart Devices...
A quick heads-up that laptops, smart phones, iPhones, & other electronics that have fairly strict power requirements, do not always appreciate direct solar power. These devices want to see specific current & voltage from the power source, and if they don't see it, they will ignore it. Although the Powerfilm F15-1800 is powerful, should the sun go behind a cloud, or should you be using it at high latitude or shoulder season, you may see your device rejecting a direct connection to the panel. For this & other reasons, we recommend a solar storage battery to collect the power generated by the Powerfilm panel, and deliver the power your devices are asking for...
A good match for the Powerfilm F15-1800 is a battery pack with at least 100 Watt-Hours of storage capacity. We recommend the following for this panel...
Connect a Battery Charger
Lastly, you will want a charger for your electronic devices that can connect to your solar storage battery (or direct to the panel in a pinch).
Remember that ordinary wall chargers will not work with solar panels since they are wanting 120V AC (not the 12V DC that your panel produces). So, select battery chargers that come with 12V car plugs. For example...
PowerFilm Solar created their folding line of solar panels to address the needs of backpackers, field researchers, and anyone else who needs their solar portable solar panel to be as lightweight and sensitive as possible. If you need a reliable panel to keep batteries & equipment running, Powerfilm panels should be at the top of your list.
Powerfilm are among the most sensitive solar cells available. Powerfilm panels will turn on earlier in the day, and turn off later in the day than rigid silicon panels & most other thin film technologies. Their sensitivity also makes Powerfilm panels the best choice for mountainous regions with variable weather, northern locations where there are plenty of low-intensity daylight hours in the summer, and anywhere you might encounter overcast or partial shade conditions.
Choose from the complete PowerFilm rollable marine-grade line, ideal for kayaks, canoes, and boat decks... 7 Watt 14 Watt 21 Watt 28 Watt