Do-It-Yourself Solar-Powered PC: Live Test

Do-It-Yourself Solar-Powered PC: Live Test

Help & FAQ

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Live-Project LED

Beneath each of our live projects you will find an LED marked "Live". It displays the current status of that particular measuring device. The Solar-PC and all cameras also have such status LEDs. Our Live-Server monitors all of the devices and automatically adjusts the LED-status to reflect the current situation.

The LED can flash in four different colors, signifying the following status:

Device operating normally

Current state unknown

An error or failure has been detected and the device is being repaired

When the LED flashes blue, the measuring device is up and running, but there isn't an editor near that could take action in case a problem occurs, for example on weekends and holidays.

Device operating normally, but won't be repaired if an error occurs
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Question: Why does the battery charge display suddenly jump to 0?
Answer: Determining the battery charge level is difficult. The voltage differs greaty between charging and discharging, making exact measurements impossbile. If the voltage is so low that the charge regulator shuts off the flow of power to the PC, the battery charge display is set to 0. In reality, the battery will still hold a minimal charge even at this point.

Question: Why is the global radiation displayed on the weather page?
Answer: The global radiation specifies the amount of radiation energy. Solar-panel companies figure in 1000 W/m²: This is the amount of radiation energy at which the solar panel reaches its nominal output.

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If you'd like to go back and start reading about our solar-powered PC project from the beginning, have a look at the articles leading up to our live test:

Tom's Hardware News Team

Tom's Hardware's dedicated news crew consists of both freelancers and staff with decades of experience reporting on the latest developments in CPUs, GPUs, super computing, Raspberry Pis and more.

  • c911darkwolf
    Something me and my wife were talking about. Solar panels are expensive, but if you make a small investment it will cut down your power bill every month or you can make a large investment go independent and sell excess back to the electric company.