Solar power is one of the most accessible types of renewable energy and is rapidly increasing in efficiency and affordability. In this project, we will show you how we used our PA-14 Mini Linear Actuator to follow the sun through a single axis of motion. Doing this increases the power yield of the solar panel by up to 25% more than a fixed solar panel.
In this post we will show you how to use the PA-35 Wi-Fi Control Box to control actuators that demand a large amount of current. Below is a video demonstration of the PA-17 Industrial Linear Actuator being controlled using a smartphone (click the picture below to start the video).
The PA-17 Industrial Linear Actuator and a couple of our other linear actuators draw up to 20 Amps of current at full load. Now you could choose a control box that is rated to provide this much current, however let’s say you wanted the range and convenience of Wi-Fi control. In that case you would be limited to the 10 Amps per channel that the PA-35 Wi-Fi Control Box provides. The solution to this problem is to use relays in conjunction with the control box. This will allow you to control up to 4 actuators at any current rating as long as the mechanical relays are rated to handle it.
Here is a list of the components that we used for this demonstration:
- - 1 x PA-35 Wi-Fi Control Box
- - 1 x PA-17 Industrial Linear Actuator (20 Amps at full load)
- - 2 x DPDT Mechanical Relays (20A)
- - 1 x PS-10 3 Channel 37.5 Amps Power Supply
- - 1 x AC-15 10 Amps Power Supply (optional: you can take +12v from the PA-27 as long as you have enough current to supply the actuators and the control box)
We also used the following tools:
- - Wire stripper
- - Electrical tape/solder
- - Small Phillips-head screwdriver
First thing we need to do is unplug all power sources from the Wi-Fi control box, then we can begin to open it up. We will be unscrewing the 4 screws to open the box.
Once we have removed the cover, we will unscrew the 3 screws to lift the circuit board.
Next we will be lifting the side of the circuit board that is opposite the LEDs so that we can slide the circuit board out without bending the LEDs. We do not need to remove the circuit board completely; we just need enough space to have access to the connections on the side.
Now that we have the circuit board exposed, we will be labeling the outputs so that we our able to relate the wiring diagram to the physical circuit. Below are the connections on the circuit board and the corresponding labels.
Here is the wiring diagram that we will be following.
Once you have finished wiring, all you need to do is power-up the power supply and connect the control box with your smartphone. We have a video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8CtuJJwYTQ) that helps show you how to connect to the Wi-Fi control box.
This concludes our example of how to control linear actuators with a large current demand using our PA-35 Wi-Fi control box. We will be covering more projects and how they work similar to this in the future. Read our blog at www.progressiveautomations.com/blog for all the latest updates, as well as our large selection of past content. If you have any questions or concerns regarding our products or would like to make a purchase do not hesitate to contact us today. Our experienced staff of engineers are here to help with whatever you may need.