PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Wed, 13 Feb 2019, 07:36

exup wrote:
Tue, 12 Feb 2019, 19:14
but when i asked MPP solar technician , he told me no way because i will get to over 18A in some conditions.
It would be great if we could always believe what these people say.

It seems reasonable to me that the solar charger would protect itself from drawing excessive current. Certainly, the low voltage models do. For example, I have 3200 W nominal PV power connected to my 3000 W nominal SCC, and have had no problems at all. But I may have been guilty of over-generalising from the low voltage models to the higher voltage models. These are buck and boost designs respectively. But I believe that in both designs, the active switching semiconductor only has to switch the output current.
As i said, most of the time is below that, but i saw it at 9,6 two times, specially after a cloud went away.
Yes, but that's with one string. The charge circuit knew it was way under the current limit. With two strings, it would know that it was near the current limit, and would just adjust the PWM ratio to draw less current.

The only question is what happens with unintended surges. It certainly happens that when the charging circuit aims for a particular current, sometimes more than that current results, for a few seconds. But the current limit is presumably about heat dissipation, and can deal with a short term overload. It will be derating itself as its temperature increases anyway.
and also they told me no more than 10 in one string, as i will be over 500V DC.
Yes, the voltage limit is a hard limit. Going over the switching device's limit even for a microsecond could cause avalanche currents to flow, which usually destroys the device immediately. The device's limit will have some margin above the 500 V rating, to allow for unavoidable electrical ringing, but you should certainly treat the voltage limit as a completely hard, never exceed limit. The worst case will be the coldest morning when the sun suddenly burts out behind a cloud.
If i understand properly, you say that Inverters will stop taking Amps form solar panels if it exceeds 18A, so he will work only up to 18A if it gets to , and if for some reason it goes to 19A it will refuse the extra 1A?
Yes, except that the panels won't ever produce more than 18 A, because they are never loaded beyond the amount that would cause 18 A to flow. Think of a battery; most batteries are capable of many thousands of amps if a sufficient load (e.g. a short circuit) is applied. But under non-fault conditions, that sort of current never flows; you just get the current dictated by the load. The MPPT is a sort of variable load for the panels.
Same thing if i go over 500V DC? (which i find crazy scary by the way :):):))
As mentioned earlier, no, over-voltage is a different situation.
So nothing should break down for sending 19Amps from the solar panels?
Again, no. The solar charger should never demand more than 18 A from the panels. The extra power from the sun goes to warming up the panels rather than converting to electricity. Think of a panel in the sun with nothing connected to it; where does the 9.5 A go? Nowhere, it never is generated, because a circuit isn't there for the current to flow through.

So to summarise again: I believe that you will be fine with the two strings, but this is based on my understanding of the buck-based low PV voltage models. I don't even see the 18 A limit in the specifications section of the user manual. (Have you found the 18 A figure in any catalog or specification page?) But you have to weigh my arguments against those from the supplier.

There is no effective way I can think of to limit the panel current to 18 A (wherever that figure came from).
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by exup » Wed, 13 Feb 2019, 20:00

well thanks again Coulomb


i will give a try to 2 strings.

As you said, there is no place in the manual talking about those 18A, i asked Mpp solar and that was the answer from their technician, i tried voltronic too as manufacturers, but now answer yet ( and probably never will be), i find quite strange that there is no mention at all in the manual, i downloaded also form all the twins companies and nothing at all about it, except for the example as installation in the manual, they use 62 cells and Amps are lower than mine, staying below 18 A in 2 strings

All what you say seems absolutely logical, so i will try the 2 strings in parallel, of course i will let you know the results, and if it blows i have another MB, so i will be able to swap it.

my main concern is that everybody here in Spain, tell me that i have to respect both Voltage limit and Amps limit too, and i can see a way to this with the sort of panels that we can get here in Spain.
Of course we have many kinds, but now, the ones that are a good value for money are the 72 cells 330w poli, also mono with 390, but always with similar specs as I shared before, and honestly they don't seem to be the best to oversize the inverter unless i give a try to 2 strings

Once again thanks a lot for your help, ill be back in a few days with results of 2 strings, im currently sending cables to the second roof and that will take me at least a couple of days work

Daniel

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Re: PIP-4048MS and PIP-5048MS inverters

Post by blacktiger63 » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 00:56

[ Moderator note: this post was moved from the "PIP-4048MS and PIP-5048MS inverters" post, since the WKS II 5kVA model has a high voltage MPPT. ]

Hello

I registered on the forum because I am looking for my hybrid inverter wks 2 5kva from wattuneed (site that I highly recommend) a new electronic model 2017 card that is down in the middle of the UPS and allows the USB connection with a computer for monitoring because mine has grid last night!

knowing electronics and good handyman I would like to replace it only here is impossible to find this map on the internet regardless of the search (name of the inverter following the seller, reference chips griller, reference of the electronic card) brief nothing !!

so I decided to register on the forum for help if one of you can tell me or can buy this part or if one of you has one in stock he is ready to sell me I am a buyer

thank you in advance.

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Re: PIP-4048MS and PIP-5048MS inverters

Post by coulomb » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 08:32

blacktiger63 wrote:
Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 00:56
I registered on the forum because I am looking for my hybrid inverter wks 2 5kva from wattuneed
Hopefully that is a genuine Voltronic Power rebadged, not a clone.

Wattuneed calls this a hybrid inverter, but in the Voltronic Power world, this is called an "off-grid" inverter-charger.
a new electronic model 2017 card that is down in the middle of the UPS and allows the USB connection with a computer for monitoring because mine has grid last night!
I assume that what you need is a replacement card, one of the ones in this post.

You might be lucky finding another forum member willing to sell you one; they do seem to be interchangeable. But your best bet is to purchase one from your supplier, Wattuneed. If they don't advertise it, they should be able to obtain one for you. But you might have to prove that your machine isn't a clone first. Send a picture of your sticker with the bar-code to your supplier with your first email to them.
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by blacktiger63 » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 13:00

hello coulomb

thank you for taking time for my problem

I also hope not to have a clone but you were right after several research I saw that it was sold under several names!

yes it is exactly that I am looking for the model card 2017 has the same serial number as my card I send you a picture of my card and that of the barcode of my inverter

small precision I am from France

Thank you again for your help.
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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 16:58

blacktiger63 wrote:
Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 13:00
I also hope not to have a clone but you were right after several research I saw that it was sold under several names!

That's the Voltronic Power business model - get the resellers to do all the customer fronting work, with the reseller's name on the front. Your machine seems genuine - final check you should have a small sticker with 2018 and month 2 blacked out near the larger sticker.
I am from France
You might also be able to buy the board from maximum_solar in France:
https://m.ebay.fr/sch/maximum_solar/m.html

Edit: are you certain that the communications board is faulty?
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by blacktiger63 » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 17:38

yes this sticker that says something you also need a picture of this sticker?

super ah, I'm going to watch that then! :)

yes I am on the current cut in my house when I went down to my inverter to see the problem it was lit but biped there was smoking by the output of the fan so I cut everything PV, EDF, and batteries then opening the little hood I saw that my chips tx1 smoked and was swollen ...... :cry:

as you can see in the picture if I unplug the socket hfpw my inverter works properly off if I plug the socket the yellow chip (tx1) is immediately recovering smoked in any case I have no more tracking via my pc in usb since! :(

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 18:13

blacktiger63 wrote:
Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 17:38
yes this sticker that says something you also need a picture of this sticker?
No, unless it's a yellow one warning about using one of the settings.
I saw that my chips tx1 smoked and was swollen ......
Oh. I thought that was glue or something :o . TX1 is a transformer. Not something you can easily buy off the shelf, unfortunately.
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by blacktiger63 » Thu, 07 Mar 2019, 18:57

no I think this sticker serves as proof of opening of the inverter (warranty) because it is stuck on the side

yes it is also that I could see I have long consulted the forum and look at several links provided by the community that redirects to electronic components resellers but unfortunately I have not managed to find this parts that I thought in the worst case replace using my soldered iron.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by David57 » Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 15:34

Hi everybody, David from France, new on this forum.
I see to make a DIY photovoltaic install and have question about the solution choice.
I have tri-phase at home, so i want to make a tri-phase photovoltaic installation.
I begin without battery.
I think to buy 3 PIP-5048MG with 42 solar panel 32V/9.3A 300W to have two strings from 7 panels on each inverter (224V/18.6A/4200W). Is it ok with solar power or is it to high ?
If i consume a total of 4kVA on the 3 phases, and solar just give 3kVA, Utility give just 1kVA for adding to solar or utility give all 4kVA and wait more polar power or less charge to switch on solar ?
It's not clear when i see the pict on inverter panel with "by-pass"
MPP is more effective at 224V on MG model than 96V on models that just accept 145V max I suppose.

Is it correct ?

Thank you for precision and have a good day,
David.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 17:17

David57 wrote:
Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 15:34
David from France, new on this forum.
Hi, David. Welcome to the forum.
I think to buy 3 PIP-5048MG with 42 solar panel 32V/9.3A 300W to have two strings from 7 panels on each inverter (224V/18.6A/4200W). Is it ok with solar power or is it to high ?
Voltronic power have recently seen the light, and are publishing sensible maximum power levels (for a long time, they merely quoted the maximum battery charge current times 50 V). [ Edit: in fact, witness the 4000 W figure just to the left of the 4500 W figure below! ] So 4200 W per inverter is fine:

Max charge power 5058MG.png
Max charge power 5058MG.png (73.2 KiB) Viewed 1632 times
[ Edit: On the Voltronic Power website, the equivalent model is the Axpert MKS II, and this power figure is given as "Maximum PV array power". It's still not totally clear if this is the maximum allowed, or just the charging power at a particular battery voltage, in this case 56.25 V . ]
If i consume a total of 4kVA on the 3 phases, and solar just give 3kVA, Utility give just 1kVA for adding to solar or utility give all 4kVA and wait more polar power or less charge to switch on solar ?
No, these inverters aren't hybrids, so they can't blend utility power and solar power. In the scenario above, you would draw 4 kW from the mains (all your units should be kW, not kVA, since only real power is conserved). The 3 kW of solar power would be able to charge the battery, if it can take it. But this is in bypass mode.

It would be better to be in battery mode, if your battery can take it. Now the 1 kW from the panels can blend with over 3 kW from your battery, to provide 4 kW to the loads.
MPP is more effective at 224V on MG model than 96V on models that just accept 145V max I suppose.
It's marginal. I read somewhere that the efficiency of buck and boost converters are very roughly inversely proportional to the ratio of the voltages. The 224 V will be boosted to some 400 V, for a ratio of 1.8. The 96 V will buck down to about 50 V, for a ratio of 1.9 . At higher battery voltages, the ratios will converge even closer. So I don't think that solar charge controller efficiency should be a major deciding factor.

[ Edit: fixed some errors in my 4 kW and 3 kW example. Sigh. ]
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 17:35

I note that if you were to use PIP-5048MKs instead of PIP-5048MGs, then in your 4 kW load scenario with 3 kW of PV power would in fact result in using 1 kW of utility power, IF the inverter was in line mode. In the PIP-5048MK, line mode is different from bypass mode. Bypass mode on both models connects AC-in to AC-out, with no ability to blend utility and solar power. But line mode on the PIP-5048MK is different; there is a dual conversion happening. AC-in power is converted to ~400 VDC for the DC bus, which is combined with ~400 VDC from solar power, and sent to the inverter to power the load. 4 kW is within the ratings of even just one inverter, so you'd likely be in line mode. The only reason you'd need to go to bypass mode is if the load exceeded the ratings of the inverter (5 kW continuous per inverter in the case of the PIP-5048MK, more for short term overloads).

[ Edit: all these examples are of course ignoring losses for simplicity. I also note that the PIP-5048MK has a 145 V SCC/MPPT. ]
[ Edit: just realised that the original example was not 4 kW per phase, but 4 kW total over three phases. Sigh. ]
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by David57 » Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 19:13

Thank you for answer, the 5048MG is not the best for reduce the bill.
5048MK appear to be more appropriate. I don't see on specs if is it possible to use it without battery.
The circuit breaker on counter is a 12kW tri, so if i load more than 5kW on inverter, the circuit breaker don't like to switch in bypass mode. Probably, the inverter accept more peak than breaker, witch is sensible to not equalized charge on phases.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by birdibird » Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 01:02

@exup
I was the one with 24 solar panels. Now even 3 x 9
They are 60 cell poly 220W
36,9 VoC / 30,2 Vmpp
7,85 Isc / 7,28 Impp

I never had any problems with this setup.
I put a 10A DC fuse on each string (+ side).
As coulomb said the inverter will take max 18A from the PV. Oversizing is not a problem.

edit: the 18A limit IS written in the manual. At least in the manual version here
Last edited by birdibird on Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 08:47, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by birdibird » Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 08:34

Update of my own OFF-grid project:

I have been running my 5048MG now for half a year batteryless, charging our Renault Zoe electric car fine.
'Granny' cable with either 10A or 13A is working great: when the power is not there (clouds or so), the PIP lowers the Voltage, and the car even kept on charging under 100V!

2 things added recently:

-Type B RCCB (Chint 63A) to be on the safe side with DC at both ends...
-Tesla Wall Charger. I got the car charging nicely even up till 20A. Under 160V the TWC switches into fault mode though.

Now the next stage:
Adding my LiYFePO4 batteries. 16 units of 4s 12V 10ah-ish = ~2kWh. In rest the voltage is around 13.25
I used to have them all connected in parallel on an EPSolar MPPT.
Settings I used were Bulk 13.8, Float 13.2, cut-off 11.8

Now I connected them in 4p4s to the PIP.
Settings set to Bulk 55.2, Float 52.8, cut-off 47.5, 32 to AUT
01 to SOL, 16 to OSO, 02 to 80A, 11 to 20A
12 to 48V, 13 to 51V

Questions:
-How does it work here with CV and CC on the PIP's?

-I hardly saw the PIP bulk charge 55.2. How can I check that what mode it is using? Does Watchpower tell me?
I first set Bulk and Float both to 56 (and later 55.2) as I have seen others do that, to charge the batteries on a higher V.

-But I also read in these forums people having lower Bulk settings, close to Float, around 53. Why is that?

-settings 12 to 48V and 13 to 51V: does this do anything with only Solar?

-Today l didn't touch my settings (Bulk 55.2, Float 52.8, cut-off 47.5) and I never saw the PIP charge above 52.8. It was mixed cloudy, raining and now and then suddenly blue sky. At the end of the day I saw the V declining, while I hardly had any loads, and when the PIP hit 48.6V it suddenly switched off and I was in the dark. What happened here? (I saw fault code 4 when it was still around 49.5V)

-Is this all related to this 'float bug?'' I thought I read I had to make sure to have the settings 02 and 11 < *5, hence the 20A choice. Or is that only if I would use AC in?

My firmware version is 71.40

Thank if anyone can shed light on this for me! :D

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 10:13

birdibird wrote:
Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 08:34
I have been running my 5048MG now for half a year batteryless, charging our Renault Zoe electric car fine.
'Granny' cable with either 10A or 13A is working great: when the power is not there (clouds or so), the PIP lowers the Voltage, and the car even kept on charging under 100V!
Wow. I think you're pretty lucky with the Zoe charger. Many chargers would just draw more power from the lower mains voltage, to maintain some desired charge current. I gather you don't connect many, if any at all, other loads to this batteryless system.
Now I connected them in 4p4s to the PIP.
Settings set to Bulk 55.2, Float 52.8, cut-off 47.5, 32 to AUT
01 to SOL, 16 to OSO, 02 to 80A, 11 to 20A
12 to 48V, 13 to 51V
Those settings sound fine, though if you don't connect a generator to the AC input, I believe that settings 12 and 13 won't do anything.
How does it work here with CV and CC on the PIP's?
It's supposed to charge the battery until it reaches the Bulk/absorb setting (setting 26, Bulk charging voltage). This is the Bulk stage. Once it reaches that point for a certain period of time (a few seconds, but with no dips more than a few volts below that level), it should keep the battery voltage near that setting. This is the Absorb stage. It can't keep the battery voltage near setting 26 if there isn't enough solar power available, but it should keep aiming for that voltage during this stage. This continues until the charge current reduces to a special value. When that happens, the charger changes to float mode, which is another "constant voltage" mode, where the voltage set-point is now the one from setting 27 (Float charging voltage). This is the float stage, where the battery is considered full. However, while the loads exceed PV power, the battery will discharge, and if it discharges enough, another charge stage will commence.
-I hardly saw the PIP bulk charge 55.2. How can I check that what mode it is using? Does Watchpower tell me?
I don't believe that Watchpower will tell you. If you can see the green LED in the middle of the LC Display panel, it will be flashing during either the bulk or absorb stages, and will be on solid in the float stage. When charge sources are not available, it will be off.

If you're not seeing 55.2 V often, it could be due to the premature float bugs (more below).
I first set Bulk and Float both to 56 (and later 55.2) as I have seen others do that, to charge the batteries on a higher V.
I don't know why others do that; it just leaves the battery at a high voltage too long, which is not good for long life.
-But I also read in these forums people having lower Bulk settings, close to Float, around 53. Why is that?
That's probably for people with boxed LFP batteries, which often come with 15 cells in series. So 53 V for them is 3.53 VPC (Volts Per Cell), equivalent to 56.5 V for 16S batteries.
-settings 12 to 48V and 13 to 51V: does this do anything with only Solar?
My understanding is that these will do nothing for your configuration, as it's never possible to go to line/bypass mode.
-Today l didn't touch my settings (Bulk 55.2, Float 52.8, cut-off 47.5) and I never saw the PIP charge above 52.8. It was mixed cloudy, raining and now and then suddenly blue sky. At the end of the day I saw the V declining, while I hardly had any loads, and when the PIP hit 48.6V it suddenly switched off and I was in the dark. What happened here? (I saw fault code 4 when it was still around 49.5V)
That sounds like the dreaded permature float bug; more below.
-Is this all related to this 'float bug?'' I thought I read I had to make sure to have the settings 02 and 11 < *5, hence the 20A choice. Or is that only if I would use AC in?
Juggling settings 02 and 11 is only to demonstrate the premature float charge bug to those who can't believe that a modern manufacturer would release products with such a glaring bug, and not fix them even in newer products. Setting 11 is maximum utility charging current, so it has no effect for you (unless you connect a generator).
My firmware version is 71.40
That sounds like the most recent firmware for your inverter. Sadly, there is no patched firmware for these, and may never be.

The premature float bug arises because the inverter should only go to float stage when two things happen: the current is low enough (they do this, obviously), and the battery voltage is high enough (this is where they screw up). Obviously, on a cloudy day, the charge power will fluctuate wildly, from the nameplate rating of the panels (or even a little more for a few seconds) down to nearly zero. So the charge current will vary from the maximum allowed by setting 02 (maximum charging current) down to almost zero. So plenty times, well before the battery is fully charged, the charge current criterion (that the charge current falls below about a fifth of setting 02) will be met. But there is a voltage criterion as well, as there should be (otherwise the charging would stop at the very first cloud, and that would be blatantly obvious). The trouble is, the factory firmware uses the wrong voltage setting to compare against. It should obviously be checking for the battery voltage to be at or near the bulk/absorb setting. Instead, they check for being at or near the float voltage setting. Even worse, they don't insist that the battery voltage is exactly the float voltage setting; half a volt less will do. With an LFP battery, the float setting is near the long flat voltage plateaus in the voltage versus state of charge curve. So if the battery has had a decent burst of charge for a while and hasn't had a lot of time to settle back to its steady state voltage, the SOC could be as low as 45% or a little lower, and it will still pass this "voltage criterion". So your charger could stop charging as it sails past 53.8 - 0.5 = 53.3 V, or 3.33 VPC, quite a long way short of 55.2 V and 3.45 VPC!

LFP batteries don't need long equalisation, but you might have to resort to setting 32 (Bulk charge time, really absorb state time) to force the charger to give a longer period of time when it's aiming for the bulk/absorb voltage. Unfortunately then the second charge bug comes in to play: all time after the first time that (absorb setting - 0.5 V) is seen is counted as absorb time. So there is no extra time for cloudy days. But at least, it must have seen nearly the absorb/bulk voltage at least once (so that's some 80% SOC already), and you can give a generous time for "absorbing" to take account of "average" cloudiness, at the expense of a little extra time at high battery voltage, and therefore at a small expense of battery life.

Please complain to your reseller, and to Voltronic Power! @Weber and I grow weary of patching version after version of firmware, when the fix is so simple.

[ Edit: "charge current" → "charge power" ]
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by birdibird » Mon, 22 Apr 2019, 08:53

Thanks @coulomb for your detailed answer 8-)
coulomb wrote:
Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 10:13
Please complain to your reseller, and to Voltronic Power! @Weber and I grow weary of patching version after version of firmware, when the fix is so simple.
I absolutely did!!!
I sent a complaint to maximum_solar through ebay.
The premature float bug arises because the inverter should only go to float stage when two things happen: the current is low enough (they do this, obviously), and the battery voltage is high enough (this is where they screw up). Obviously, on a cloudy day, the charge power will fluctuate wildly, from the nameplate rating of the panels (or even a little more for a few seconds) down to nearly zero. So the charge current will vary from the maximum allowed by setting 02 (maximum charging current) down to almost zero. So plenty times, well before the battery is fully charged, the charge current criterion (that the charge current falls below about a fifth of setting 02) will be met. But there is a voltage criterion as well, as there should be (otherwise the charging would stop at the very first cloud, and that would be blatantly obvious). The trouble is, the factory firmware uses the wrong voltage setting to compare against. It should obviously be checking for the battery voltage to be at or near the bulk/absorb setting. Instead, they check for being at or near the float voltage setting. Even worse, they don't insist that the battery voltage is exactly the float voltage setting; half a volt less will do. With an LFP battery, the float setting is near the long flat voltage plateaus in the voltage versus state of charge curve. So if the battery has had a decent burst of charge for a while and hasn't had a lot of time to settle back to its steady state voltage, the SOC could be as low as 45% or a little lower, and it will still pass this "voltage criterion". So your charger could stop charging as it sails past 53.8 - 0.5 = 53.3 V, or 3.33 VPC, quite a long way short of 55.2 V and 3.45 VPC!
Looking at the manual of Polytech and MPPSolar here, they advise to set both bulk and float to 53,2 (=3,55v, so 56,8 for 16s or 14,2 per 12v).
Do you think they would have done that as a work around for the charge bug? Why otherwise would they advise to leave the voltage that high?
LFP batteries don't need long equalisation, but you might have to resort to setting 32 (Bulk charge time, really absorb state time) to force the charger to give a longer period of time when it's aiming for the bulk/absorb voltage. Unfortunately then the second charge bug comes in to play: all time after the first time that (absorb setting - 0.5 V) is seen is counted as absorb time. So there is no extra time for cloudy days. But at least, it must have seen nearly the absorb/bulk voltage at least once (so that's some 80% SOC already), and you can give a generous time for "absorbing" to take account of "average" cloudiness, at the expense of a little extra time at high battery voltage, and therefore at a small expense of battery life.
okay, so considering all that, it might be a good idea to use these settings:
absorb 56,8 (3,55)
float 53,8 (3,36)
What should I do with setting 32 then? 30 minutes? 1 hour? Longer?
And would it make a difference on cloudy days like this to set setting 11 to 10A and 02 to 20A as I saw max 14A coming in?

Then something extra:
I was shocked to see this morning 38V on my batteries. I had set the cut off to 47,5V.
It turned out that in each series of 4 12V batteries, 1 had hit 10V and the pcm board had switched the battery off.
Other batteries were still around 12V.
How is this possible? With my previous setup I also had the cut-off on 11,8V.
Does the inverter pull power from the batteries even after switched off?

Happily all were fine. I connected them all in parallel and trickle charged them on 14.4V 3.8A to 13.0V and they were all showing 13.0V before I reconnected them in 48V setup.

So: I need to change my cut-off value.
Following what Chris Hobson is sharing on powerforum.co.za I might set it to 51,5 (3,22) for now.
What is your experience/advise here?

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Mon, 22 Apr 2019, 14:01

birdibird wrote:
Mon, 22 Apr 2019, 08:53
coulomb wrote:
Sat, 20 Apr 2019, 10:13
Please complain to your reseller...
I absolutely did!!!
I sent a complaint to maximum_solar through ebay.
Excellent, thanks!
Looking at the manual of Polytech and MPPSolar here, they advise to set both bulk and float to 53,2 (=3,55v, so 56,8 for 16s or 14,2 per 12v).
Do you think they would have done that as a work around for the charge bug? Why otherwise would they advise to leave the voltage that high?
I don't think it's for the charge bug; it seems to be some sort of misguided idea that "lithiums don't need a float stage". Fine, but why leave them at such a high state of charge then? So I really can't explain their thinking.
okay, so considering all that, it might be a good idea to use these settings:
absorb 56,8 (3,55)
float 53,8 (3,36)
What should I do with setting 32 then? 30 minutes? 1 hour? Longer?
[ Edit: Even 56.8 V is a bit much for LFP; I use 55.2 V on my own 16S LFP battery. You'll miss out on a tiny bit of capacity, but hopefully will extend the life of the battery by not charging to such a high voltage every day. ]
I would say an hour [ edit: for the absorb time ] would be a reasonable compromise. My LFP pack seems to need some 20 minutes of "absorb" time, so triple that to take care of cloudy days seems OK. And it's only leaving the cells at a high state of charge for an extra 40 minutes per day, and that only on the sunniest of days.
And would it make a difference on cloudy days like this to set setting 11 to 10A and 02 to 20A as I saw max 14A coming in?
It will make no difference when off-grid with no generator what value you give to setting 11. Setting 02 can easilt be C/2 for LFP cells; since your battery is around 40 Ah, then 20 A is just right. You could probably get away with 30 A. I note that 100 Ah is normally considered the smallest for a 5 kW inverter.
I was shocked to see this morning 38V on my batteries. I had set the cut off to 47,5V.
That certainly is strange.
It turned out that in each series of 4 12V batteries, 1 had hit 10V and the pcm board had switched the battery off.
PCM board? You mean the inverter shut itself off due to the battery voltage dropping below setting 29, "Low DC Cutoff Voltage"? Or do you have some sort of Battery Management System (BMS) which cuts off the current at low battery voltage?
Other batteries were still around 12V.
? So some sets of 4 cells recovered to 12 V and some to 10 V? I note that 10 + 3 x 12 = 46 V, rather different to 38 V.
How is this possible? With my previous setup I also had the cut-off on 11,8V.
Does the inverter pull power from the batteries even after switched off?
I'm puzzled at how this is possible. Yes, the inverter pulls some current when turned off, but it should draw only negligible power, a few milliamps, I believe.

Perhaps at sun-up the next morning the inverter attempted to start up. (I believe that any charge source will start the inverter, if the "main" rocker switch is on. I believe that PV power is your only charge source.) Maybe with a depleted small battery like that, it isn't able to complete the start-up, and somehow just drains the battery instead? Not starting up properly, it would not be charging the battery either.

It would be very valuable to observe what happens around cut-off time, perhaps with a multimeter on the battery terminals. But also at dawn; perhaps turn off your PV isolator after the above, so you can create your own "artificial dawn" at a convenient time. Though an artificial "sudden dawn" (turning the PV isolator back on) might have different effects to a normal gradual dawn.
Happily all were fine. I connected them all in parallel and trickle charged them on 14.4V 3.8A to 13.0V and they were all showing 13.0V before I reconnected them in 48V setup.
Well, that's great to hear. The occasional plunge to 2.5 VPC should not be too harmful. Below that it gets bad, especially below 2.0 VPC.
So: I need to change my cut-off value.
Following what Chris Hobson is sharing on powerforum.co.za I might set it to 51,5 (3,22) for now.
What is your experience/advise here?
Yes, that could be a good place to start. Hopefully, that will stop the car charging before the battery gets too weak to restart the inverter next day, if that's what is actually going on.

What sort of power were you getting charging the Zoe with the battery connected? I think it might have been a bit much for the 40 Ah battery. That might have confused things even more. Though if it was no more than 13 A via the "granny EVSE", that would be 3 kW, which is about 60 A at 50 V, or 1.5 C for your 40 Ah battery. That should not have been a problem.
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by birdibird » Tue, 23 Apr 2019, 07:39

coulomb wrote:
Mon, 22 Apr 2019, 14:01
[ Edit: Even 56.8 V is a bit much for LFP; I use 55.2 V on my own 16S LFP battery. You'll miss out on a tiny bit of capacity, but hopefully will extend the life of the battery by not charging to such a high voltage every day. ]
I would say an hour [ edit: for the absorb time ] would be a reasonable compromise. My LFP pack seems to need some 20 minutes of "absorb" time, so triple that to take care of cloudy days seems OK. And it's only leaving the cells at a high state of charge for an extra 40 minutes per day, and that only on the sunniest of days.
An hour seems good indeed.
I already saw now the batteries being charged today at absorb level, so that is a great step forward.
55.2 was also what I had before in my 12V setting, so I might return to that.
It will make no difference when off-grid with no generator what value you give to setting 11. Setting 02 can easilt be C/2 for LFP cells; since your battery is around 40 Ah, then 20 A is just right. You could probably get away with 30 A. I note that 100 Ah is normally considered the smallest for a 5 kW inverter.
My 16 batteries are rated for 12Ah 12V. Because they sat on a shelf for some time and they were replacing them by versions with bluetooth, they sold them to me as 10Ah and at a nice discount :D
Optimal charge current C/2 = 6A, max 10-12A.
So that x 4 -> 30A seems indeed a good in between.
Note to self: Not x 16 but x 4-> I need to get used to the 48V thinking iso 12V ;)
? So some sets of 4 cells recovered to 12 V and some to 10 V? I note that 10 + 3 x 12 = 46 V, rather different to 38 V.
Each battery has a pcm board which cuts off:
at 10V
over 14,6V
over 30A
In that way I had in each series of 4 batteries 1 of them cutting off (0V) and the rest recovered to 12-ish which can make 38V.

Note to self: Not x 16 but x 4 -> I ordered a DC breaker of 125A, better to use the 63A version ;)
How is this possible? With my previous setup I also had the cut-off on 11,8V.
Does the inverter pull power from the batteries even after switched off?
I'm puzzled at how this is possible. Yes, the inverter pulls some current when turned off, but it should draw only negligible power, a few milliamps, I believe.

Perhaps at sun-up the next morning the inverter attempted to start up. (I believe that any charge source will start the inverter, if the "main" rocker switch is on. I believe that PV power is your only charge source.) Maybe with a depleted small battery like that, it isn't able to complete the start-up, and somehow just drains the battery instead? Not starting up properly, it would not be charging the battery either.

It would be very valuable to observe what happens around cut-off time, perhaps with a multimeter on the battery terminals. But also at dawn; perhaps turn off your PV isolator after the above, so you can create your own "artificial dawn" at a convenient time. Though an artificial "sudden dawn" (turning the PV isolator back on) might have different effects to a normal gradual dawn.
Good idea, I'll fiddle around with it.
Hopefully, that will stop the car charging before the battery gets too weak to restart the inverter next day, if that's what is actually going on.

What sort of power were you getting charging the Zoe with the battery connected? I think it might have been a bit much for the 40 Ah battery. That might have confused things even more. Though if it was no more than 13 A via the "granny EVSE", that would be 3 kW, which is about 60 A at 50 V, or 1.5 C for your 40 Ah battery. That should not have been a problem.
I did not have the Zoe connected at the end of that day, as the weather was really bad.
Today I did charge the Zoe on both 10A and 13A and with the higher cut-off setting at 51,5 all went fine.

I understood that this 60A your are speaking about is not being pulled from the batteries at all, but there is a direct Solar -> Load. Only when the Solar is not sufficient for this 3kW, additional current is drawn from the batteries, correct?

That brings me to my next step.
I bought for the Zoe a Tesla Wall Charger (TWC). This charger can be put in slave mode and managed by this script: https://github.com/cdragon/TWCManager
I installed this on a Raspberry Pi Zero and it works fine. I can use a webpage to set the Amps being sent to the car.
My dream is though to have this done dynamically.
The TWCManager script has a 'greenenergy' option to pull info from an external source and correct the Amps sent to the car.

So, I would like to do this with the PIP.
How can I pull from the PIP information that I can have the car being charged with only the excess Solar power?
So that the TWC script can add or substract 1A here and there going with the power available and how much the house uses.
That could mean: battery charges first if needed, and if battery is full, fluctuate the car charging in that way that the SOC doesn't go under a certain percentage.

Before, when I didn't connect the batteries yet, I was thinking of tracing the Voltage.
The TWC works when the AC it gets is above 160V. So, if the V approaches 160V, substract 1A and when it approaches 240V add 1A etc..
This sounds a bit easier, but of course I would like to keep my batteries connected.

I saw somewhere that you and @weber did already something with a raspberry pi?
I have no experience yet with Node-Red etc but eager to learn.

Can you point me in the right direction?
Thanks! 8-)

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Tue, 23 Apr 2019, 12:10

birdibird wrote:
Tue, 23 Apr 2019, 07:39
I understood that this 60A your are speaking about is not being pulled from the batteries at all, but there is a direct Solar -> Load. Only when the Solar is not sufficient for this 3kW, additional current is drawn from the batteries, correct?
Yes, that's right. But as night falls, it's pretty much guaranteed that solar output won't be sufficient for loads. I was assuming you'd leave this to do it's own thing unattended. Ah, but you would be using the SOL Output Priority Mode (setting 01), which means it will try to switch to utility after sundown... Obviously it can't.
How can I pull from the PIP information that I can have the car being charged with only the excess Solar power?
Send it periodic (say once per 2-3 seconds) QPIGS command. The response should be something like this:
(000.0 00.0 235.1 49.9 0564 0525 013 412 51.00 001 028 0038 0001 060.4 50.99 00000 01110110 00 00 00086 01cc
The third (underlined) number is the AC-out voltage, in volts. There are a host of other data there; for your purposes, ignore them (except for battery voltage, see below).

To send the command, you'll need a computer with a serial port, or one with a USB port and a USB to serial adapter. (The former could be a Raspberry Pi or Arduino, the latter could be a laptop or other computer running communications software for testing.) The command requires a CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Check), this is a pair of special characters that indicate to the inverter that the command was received correctly. Since you'll only be sending one command with no parameters, the CRC will be fixed; for QPIGS, the characters are 0xB7 and 0xA9 (both happen to be unprintable characters with the "sign" bit set). See the PIP-4048MS and PIP-5048MS topic index for details on how to do this; I assume it's the exact same for these PIP-5048GE etc models.

You'll need a way of picking out the data you need from the returned string. You can use the column position for this, but it's better to break up the response into an array of numbers, using the space character as a separator. That way, if they change some field from say 3 to 4 digits with a firmware update (should that ever be possible), then your program will still work.
That could mean: battery charges first if needed, and if battery is full, fluctuate the car charging in that way that the SOC doesn't go under a certain percentage.
That will complicate things a little; perhaps start without the battery. There is a field in the QPIGS output that is supposed to be the State Of Charge (SOC) of the battery. Ignore it; for LFP batteries and unpatched firmware, it will be rubbish. You'll have to go by battery voltage alone. The ninth numeric field (also underlined) has the battery voltage. Use that to guess when the battery is full or nearly full.
The TWC works when the AC it gets is above 160V. So, if the V approaches 160V, substract 1A and when it approaches 240V add 1A etc..
By default, the output voltage is 230 V (the international standard, which Australia largely ignores*). So perhaps when the output voltage exceeds 220 V or so, not approaching 240, as that should never happen, unless you change the output voltage with a special command.

[ Edit: * We are going from 240 ±6% to 230 +10%/-6%, which is one volt less. Queensland is supposed to be aiming for 230 +6%/-2% as the preferred range, to take effect by July 2020. Today my mains is still at 230 V +8%, so we shall see. ]
I saw somewhere that you and @weber did already something with a raspberry pi?
Actually, it's a Beaglebone Black. But similar.
I have no experience yet with Node-Red etc but eager to learn.
You don't have to use Node-Red, but it's a suitable system for this sort of work. We send so many commands, some of which take so long to respond (and we cater for 2 PIPs as well), that we can only get data every 10 seconds. But you could use Python as well; you'll have to know Python to fiddle with the wall charger script. Presumably, you could do everything in the one script. Or of course, you could (re)write it all in any other language or system, if that suits you better. It seems easiest to modify the existing Python script, and Python is a reasonable language (as opposed to Perl, say, at least to me).

[ Edit: "I don't know what it would do with no AC-in detected." → "Obviously it can't." ]
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by ojeysky » Mon, 01 Jul 2019, 03:28

exup wrote:
Tue, 12 Feb 2019, 01:00
Hello everybody ¡¡¡ My name is Daniel and I live in Spain, sorry if my english is not perfect , i will try my best do.

I own a PIP5048GK, and already working with it for a few months, (August 2018).
it.

Anyway thats been my experience with it, just in case someone has only 5 panels with similars specs as mine and the inverter suddenly stops, well just try with 6.

Daniel
I got my PIP3024GK setup with 4 250w panels in series. I am getting input of almost 130v yet it's reading zero on both the watt and ampere. I am wondering if this also mean that I need to get to 6 panels? I do not have the 02 error on mine just that the solar icon on the screen keeps blinking and no charge is getting to the battery.

Regards

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Mon, 01 Jul 2019, 18:48

ojeysky wrote:
Mon, 01 Jul 2019, 03:28
wondering if this also mean that I need to get to 6 panels?
I'd say so. Six 250 W panels (usually 60 cell) might not even be enough, since @exup seems to have been using 72-cell panels. Often MPPTs will require more than the lowest value of the MPPT range (in this case 120 V) before they'll start producing. Once they start, they can operate over the full MPPT range. Unfortunately, I can't find that figure; I suspect it's not specified in user accessible documents.

Since you are at almost 130 V at least some of the time, it seems that just one more panel would get it started. However, you'd likely want the six to allow some production during poor solar conditions.

[ Edit: added "since @exup ... panels". ]
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by ojeysky » Mon, 05 Aug 2019, 01:41

coulomb wrote:
Mon, 01 Jul 2019, 18:48

Since you are at almost 130 V at least some of the time, it seems that just one more panel would get it started. However, you'd likely want the six to allow some production during poor solar conditions.

[ Edit: added "since @exup ... panels". ]
I have gotten 6 and controller starts up with mppt from 8:30am but what I have observed is that it goes off from 5pm even though there is still sunlight. I wonder if this means I need to add more panels or is this some settings issue that I need to look into?

I have added 2 pictures to explain this, at high voltage of over 190v I was basically not generating anything (no mppt) but then I was generating at 130v. I am not sure I understand how this work. The manual says that the mppt will start from 120v
Attachments
20190805_172248.jpg
Mppt at lower voltage
20190805_172248.jpg (4.31 MiB) Viewed 797 times
20190805_172142.jpg
No mppt at higher voltage at 5pm
20190805_172142.jpg (770.39 KiB) Viewed 797 times

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by mufaddalk » Mon, 12 Aug 2019, 19:16

Hi, first time posting, i have a PIP5048GK, i have been reading through the forums trying to grasp as much i can understand. Still not sure how to setup the inverter with the best config and would like your help.

PIP5048GK inverter is recent model (04 2019) I have checked that its not a clone. I have 16 CALB 100ah batteries in series. I have 11 x 185W panels connected in series which gives max 420Vdc. For the software i am using watch power connected via Bluetooth at the moment. I also have connected my grid power to utility.

I have set them up with 56V as Bulk and 54.2V as float. Based on reading this forum the inverter has the float bug. I find it giving 54.2V all the time which is not charging the battery and the battery slowly drains. If i set the float to 56V i can see the battery charging.

So my question is

1. for the batteries i am using what is the optimum bulk and float and any other settings i should set considering the fact that it has the float bug. Also would like advice on back to grid (my settings is 51V) and back to discharge voltage (my settings 53V). Unfortunately i cant change my battery cut off voltage which is set at 48V. I would like to be conservative with my settings, not charge too high to preserve battery life.

2. Can someone explain battery equalization settings, if it can be set for this inverter model and whats the recommended setting for my battery.

Thanks for your help. If this questions is already answered somewhere please point me to the correct post.

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Re: PIP-5048GE, PIP-5048GK and PIP-5048MG inverters (with unsafe SCC)

Post by coulomb » Tue, 13 Aug 2019, 06:59

ojeysky wrote:
Mon, 05 Aug 2019, 01:41
I have observed is that it goes off from 5pm even though there is still sunlight.
Sorry, I missed this post somehow. You possibly have setting 01 (Output Source Priority) set to SUb (Solar first). This will switch to line/bypass mode when the sun goes down, and it looks like you don't have an AC-in source (grid or generator). You should use SbU (battery before Utility) or USb (Utility first if you ever connect a generator; then you'd want to use that generator whenever it's available).
Nissan Leaf 2012 with new battery May 2019.
5650 W solar, 2xPIP-4048MS inverters, 16 kWh battery.
1.4 kW solar with 1.2 kW Latronics inverter and FIT.
160 W solar, 2.5 kWh 24 V battery for lights.
Patching PIP-4048/5048 inverter-chargers.

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