goTenna Mesh community

Solar charging a goTenna in Seattle

Hello Seattle Meshers,
What type of solar panel wattage do you need to solar charge a goTenna in Seattle? As I write this, it is raining.

I’m a similar latitude and I have good success using about 10w/6v panels from Voltaic until they get snow. For me it’s all about keeping the relays on and not having to reset them after long periods of gloomy weather. Get the biggest panel your budget and location allow if you want to minimize downtime. If you’re just using relay mode 10 watts might be a good starting point for Seattle weather.

For what it’s worth, I use a 10w 5v monocrystalline solar panel. Works great attached to the west side of my house. I use it to charge a stationary relay station. I don’t live in Seattle, but the sun shines in Seattle just like it does in Los Angeles. Just not as often.

Thank you for your comment and for mentioning the 10w/6v panels from Voltaic. I had bought a “BigBlue 3 USB Ports 28W Solar Charger (5V/4.8A Max)” solar panel (which is hanging from inside my kitchen window), but so far I have charged my new goTenna only from the electrical outlet. Just in case, I also got a K-TOR Power Box 50, something that looks like bike pedals without the bike. This is all new to me, and I have to test these gadgets to understand what works best.

Thank you for sharing the type of solar panel that you are using. As I mentioned in my response to rogeroverout above, I am just getting acquainted with all this, so I like reading what people are using. While the sun is the same, the amount of solar energy absorbed by a solar panel in Seattle will be different from the amount of energy absorbed by the same type of panel if placed in LA. The variation is due to the latitude and thickness of the atmosphere.