After I bought some BioLite campsite lights recently, I got interested in various solar panels to charge them.
Needless to say there are a lot of options out there.
I am currently teetering on the edge of buying one of these since my family is finally getting to the point where we can start doing some extended camping trips. I do not have a direction that I have gone yet…but I tend to err in the direction of getting a bit more than I need.
Personally, I feel that this gives me the peace of mind that I won’t need to “upgrade” in the future when/if I realize that I want more capability.
The below linked article doesn’t cover EVERYTHING you need to start your research on solar panels and other outdoor power options (see the Wirecutter and Outdoor Gear Lab articles I linked to above too)…BUT…it has some one of the best “introduction to solar panels” write up I found.
Plus it links to 4 or 5 other types of “best solar panel for…” articles. It’s a great place to start if you’re curious.
Solar power varies according to multiple environmental conditions. Solar irradiance values, shadings, temperature, and the amount of direct sunlight exposure changes the output power of your solar panel and can change the charging speed of your solar charger. Moreover, if you are purchasing solar panels for off-grid boat applications, you will probably use a battery pack and a charge controller. Some energy will be lost in the energy conversion process as well. Therefore, you must estimate the size of the solar panel a little above the specific demands if you want it to charge within a single day.Ecotality.com
Let me know your thoughts on your favorite solar power options!!!
Here is another great website that gets more into the technical style reviews…VERY thorough.