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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,
I'm a bit confuse here. I have read that there is no alternator in the insight because the of the ima that can take care of what an alternator will do. I have also read that the electric system power come from the ima battery and not de 12v. I must be wrong because I would not understand the purpose of the 12 v then. Anyway, I have seen a solar panel that can recharge the 12 v so here is my question: Does it mean that if i put in a Solar panel in my power plug that will mean that i'm recharging my ima throught solar power. Too easy it seems.

Here is a link form the solar panel:
http://gateway.canadiantire.ca/driver.p ... 443281870_
 

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I think that the idea that the "electric system" power comes from the IMA and not the 12v is probably flawed.

All the standard electrical components (lights, window motors, etc) are 12v and the power must come from the 12v system.

I can tell from your writing that you are leaning in this direction because as you say, what would the point be of a 12v system if it went unused?

I also agree with you that by putting one of the solar chargers into your 12v system, you can charge the 12v system, but there's no way for that to charge the IMA system.

By the way, if you want to mess with one of these chargers, get one of the VW ones from ebay. You see, VW seems to ship each of its new cars with one of these chargers to the dealer, and employees of the dealership seem to sell them on ebay all the time.

Way cheaper than the Crappy Tire prices in your link!

Edit: OK here you go. This is what you would have to do to charge your IMA system: http://www.insightcentral.net/forum/vie ... php?t=5442
 

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Paul, I believe those solar panels charge Mike's lead acid batteries, not his 144 volt IMA batteries.
 

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The 12v battery is used for:
1) Maintainig power to electrical components when the key is removed.
2) Power up ECM and IMA components when the key is first turned.
3) Used as a "buffer" for power during normal driving.
4) Maintains power to all components during auto stop.

The IMA system includes a DC to DC converter to reduce voltage from 144v
to 12v to charge the 12v battery and power the 12v components. There is
no direct way to charge the IMA batteries directly from the cigarette lighter
(I should call it the 12v accessory port).

JoeCVT - Just your average CVT owner
 

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b1shmu63 said:
Paul, I believe those solar panels charge Mike's lead acid batteries, not his 144 volt IMA batteries.
Oh yeah, you are right, he has those extra batteries in there.

Well anyway, that would be along the lines of the scale required to recharge the IMA, as compared to the 1 foot square charger in the links above.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I found why I though it was the Ima that was providing power...:
Honda has also taken advantage of the electric motor / generator for the following purposes:

There is no conventional alternator - all the normal electric components are supplied power from the electric motor/generator, converted from 144v to 12v by a DC-to-DC converter.
Found here:
http://www.insightcentral.net/KB/faq-ima.html
 

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The 144V battery only holds 4 useable AH, starting with a charged IMA battery does help with MPG, especially if you tend to drive with only light IMA use, but with any moderate assist, the battery will discharge within a mile or so, so the solar charging is probably not going to help much for the required cost and complexity. Solar panels are constant current power supplies, and if you try to charge the 144V battery with them, you could easily overcharge the pack, as well as messing up the SOC measurements. The only safe way to charge the 144V pack is with the car turned on.
I am charging the 48V lead acid batteries with the solar panels, the panels max voltage is below the max float for the batteries so there is no danger of overcharging.
Lots to consider . ;)
 

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Solar

I suggest using your solar panels to run fans to keep your parked Insight cool. That will make your batteries happier, reduce any AC use if you use AC, and probably give you a better mpg boost over the lifetime than trickle charging the 12V (or even the IMA battery).

If you have enough sun to get you good PV energy, you probably have enough sun to also make your car interior and battery hot while parked, so best to use that energy to keep the car cool and your batteries cool.

If you would charge the IMA with your Insight in the shade, then that's a good use of the solar, If the sun is on your Insight, best to grab that and use it to power some fans vs. store the energy. Methinks.
 
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