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Need wiring help for mini solar panel to fan

  1. Sep 9, 2008 #1

    I was wondering if anyone could help me wire up a solar panel to a 12v fan. At first i thought it would work if you were to hook up the solar panel straight to the fan but it didn't. I'm not much of an EE, but i ask for anyone's help and understanding.

    What i have is:

    **Sunforce 50012 1.8 Watt Solar Battery Maintainer as the solar panel.
    Max Output 1.8 Watts.

    **A 12v computer fan.
    Operating Voltage 8-14v
    Current Draw 0.24A
    Power Consumption 2.88w
    Bearings FDB, fluid dynamic bearings

    This will be installed on our dog house just to keep her cool on the hotter days. Possibly make it spin faster as more sun shines on it? I only need it to run when the sun is out, maybe i can have a rechargable battery connected to it to run on hot nights?

    I've researched this online and can across a DIY site that tells me i need:

    a schottky diode
    Electrolytic capacitor
    dc/dc converter
    rechargable aa batteries
    8-pin socket
    120 uH inductor
    pc board
    pv cell
    12v fan.

    The problem i have is that their solar panel is completly different and if that was so, the specific type of chips/resistors/diodes would be different as well.

    Can someone help me what exactly it is that i need to get to get this fan to spin? Here is the link to the DIY i've found. http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Amazing-Solar-Powered-Fan-A-Green-Gadget/#

    Thanks for your help.

    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 9, 2008 #2


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    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    There's no reason not to conenct directly to the fan.
    The panel probably puts out about 13.5-14V so the 12V DC fan will work fine.

    Using it with the car battery isn't too much more difficult, if the panel has a diode builtin (probably has if intended to charge cars) just connect it to a 12V car battery (or a lead acid backup battery from an alarm system) and connect the fan accross the same battery. An inline 500mA fuse might be a good idea and make sure that nothing can short the battery terminals - like rainwater or a dog's hind leg!
  4. Sep 9, 2008 #3
    Hello, and thanks for your reply..

    I just added the specs of the fan and panel above..

    I tried connecting the panel directly to the fan but it doesn't move at all, not even a little ummphhh..

    I'll also keep in mind the inline fuse! thanks for the tip! :)
  5. Sep 9, 2008 #4


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    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    If the panel is 1.8W @ 12V it's only putting out about 120mA, you listed the fan as needing 240mA. You're going to need a bigger panel (or 2 in parallel) - or a smaller fan.
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