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Mobile Solar-Powered Livestock Watering Pump
We've just finished testing a new mobile solar-powered livestock watering pump that we expect to have on the market by April. We think it's unique because it runs on either battery or solar power, so we're finding new applications for it as a mobile power source all the time.
Still, our main thrust is as a mobile live-stock waterer since dry weather continues to be a big concern for ranchers in our part of the country. We find the system very handy to pull up to an old derelict windmill, pull the pipe and slide the electric pump down into the water. You can also use the system to check a well's recharge rate.
Our system consists of a solar array mounted on a 5 by 8-ft. trailer equipped with two 6.50 by 15-in. tires. The four-panel array, capable of generating 17.5 volts and putting out 105 watts, charges six deep cycle batteries. A controller regulates battery charging and a heavy-duty circuit breaker between batteries and equipment provides circuit breaker protection. Heart of the system is a 12 volt submersible pump. We can bring up water from wells over 80 ft. deep and pump at 2 gpm's. Our solar array mounts on a pivot on the trailer so you can aim panels directly at the sun. It also folds flat for traveling across pastures or down the road without damaging anything. A basket in back holds 100 ft. of 3/4-in. dia. pvc pipe for water-pumping.
We have an optional inverter which converts 12 volts D.C. to 110 volts A.C. so you can power drills, saws, and other equipment with the unit.
We'll be selling the system for $4,500. (Dave Sampson, Oak Grove Fabrication, Rt. 1, Box 69, Alta Vista, Kan. 66834; ph 800 499-5311 or 913 499-5311. Bil Dorsett, Sunwrights Photo Voltaics, 1715 Leavenworth, Manhatten, Kan. 66502; ph 913 539-1956.)

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1996 - Volume #20, Issue #1