Importance of solar powered automatic irrigation system:
As the world population and food demand is constantly increasing agriculture field farmers are facing many problems in watering their plants to keep their crops green in summer season due to the global water crisis, which makes it extremely difficult for them to meet the total food demand. It’s because they don’t have correct idea about the availability of the sustainable power sources currently available. Even if the power is available, the farmers have to wait until the pitch is properly watered.
Thus, this process restricts them to stop doing other more important tasks. But there is a solution, i.e., automatic solar submersible pump control panel for irrigation. In the trial of solar based plant irrigation using submersible pumps, PV cells are used to generate electricity, which is stored in rechargeable batteries. These batteries produce power for the system operation without any continues energy costs. A submersible pump controller is used to pump a water from a boor well to a storage water tank. Then, the water is drawn by a submersible pump at the slope’s toe, where the installed sprinklers water the crops or plants.
The main goal of this irrigation system is to develop an irrigation system in the field of agriculture by using Solar Energy which is much more suitable than conventional modes of irrigation. This is not only good and beneficial to the environment but is also extremely advantageous to the farmers itself.
These systems work in the sunlight (solar energy based). When sun shines the water pumping process is a sensible way of solar electric power utilization throughout the summer, as the water necessity is the highest. The direct relation between the generation of energy when the sun is at its peak and the requirement for water for the plants at the same time creates a perfect balance for this mode of irrigation. These pumps provide a reliable water source for plantation. For any solar based pumping system, the capacity to drive water is a function of three variable such as power, flow and pressure.
The following are the main components that are used in this automatic solar submersible pump control panel for irrigation
- Solar Panel: These panels are designed with solar cells composed of semiconductor materials. The main function of Solar panels is to convert solar energy into commonly used electrical energy generally of 12V, which is further used for the rest of the circuit. The number of cells required and their size depends on the rating of the load which is based on various external factors like the size of farming operations. The collection of the right combination and number of solar cells can produce maximum electricity. But the solar panel must place exactly at right angles to the sun rays.
- The Source: Water sources are available in the form of springs, drilled wells, rivers, ponds, etc. the nearest and most effective source of water can be easily connected to the irrigation system for best results.
- The Submersible Pump: This solar irrigation system contains a submersible pump, a water tank, an irrigation pump, associated water pumps which are the main components of the actual irrigation process. In the site trial, the submersible pump is kept in a stainless-steel case, which is placed in a well pit at the junction of the open channel and the natural stream course. The pump controller pumps water to the water tank at a particular time period as set in the control unit which can be pre-set for the automation aspect and process of this particular system. This system is designed with 450W of power, which is capable of pumping 2000 litres of water within 60 minutes. This power capacity takes into account the height difference between the water tank and the solar submersible pump if the right equipment’s are installed.
- The PV Panels: The photo voltaic cells depend on the size of the pump and farming operations. A panel is esteemed in watts of thermal power it can produce. This solar submersible pumping system should be operated with a PV array of capacity in the range of 200 to 500 watts peak, and measured under some standard test conditions for optimum results. A plenty of modules in series & parallel could be used to get the necessary PV power array power o/p. The o/p power of the PV modules which are used in the PV array under standard test conditions should be a min of 74 watts peak. Meeting all these technical requirements will ensure that the Solar powered automatic irrigation system works best even at extreme climatic conditions.
- Charge Controller: A solar charge controller is an extremely important device in any solar-power irrigation system. It is used to maintain proper charging voltages of the batteries. The charge controller controls current and voltage from the solar panel and charges the battery, and also stops the charging of the battery from over and undercharging conditions. This ensures that damages and accidents are avoided and the entire system functions seamlessly
- Battery: The Battery is an electric device, that is used to store current which is produced from the solar panel and supplied to the corresponding loads for cases where the solar energy may not be produced as much as required due to external situations. The number of batteries required depend on the load requirement which is based on the size of operations and such factors.
- Inverter: The main function of the inverter is that it converts the battery’s voltage to AC voltage in order to activate the loads and make the generated energy usable on a commercial scale. Therefore, it helps us to even run many electronic devices, home appliances and computers if installed for domestic gardens. There are numerous types of inverters available in the market today. The characteristics of typical inverters include high switching frequency, high conversion frequency and less harmonic content, and so on. Choosing the right inverter plays a vital role for the farmers needs to be precisely met.