Cool (he he) tool

Managed to get my hands on a awesome tool, which also just so happens to be my new phone.

Got the new Cat phone, mainly for its FLIR Lepton 3 sensor, and what a cool (pun intended) tool this is, especially for any electrical or solar work, or even just for playing around with electrical motors, like I do.

Very first scan was of my solar panels, checking for any hot spots. Luckily none found, but will keep checking every year, just to be sure.

Also checked the solar geyser for any cold spots

Then, went inside and scanned my whole system, from the cabling to the batteries.
Found just one possible issue on my Pylon connectors so will keep scanning them under different loads.

What is extremely handy is you can take the thermal picture and later edit and add multiple measurement points, as the image is saved with the full thermal gradient information, You can also vary the opacity of the background, to make the outlines of the objects in the photo stand out.

Also handy to check on your parrot’s health :smile: :smile:


You are going to make me buy a thermal camera!

I saw your first photo’s, and immediately was going to tell you tho check your heavier current connections on your batteries.
But I see you got there ahead of me.
My guys are equipped with a flir as part of their standard tools for this exact reason.

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This thing is awesome … but will create extra work for you :smile:

I will need to replace my lounge ceiling insulation, as I could see the amount of thermal losses through the ceiling.

I’m getting way too excited. Also planning to redo my insulation.

This shows you exactly where possible issues are.

Interesting. Currently I’m busy with construction at my house (while living here with a 1 year old, she was 6 months old when it started - not recommended) so the electricians are just completely messing up my insulation. I’m not going into the ceiling anymore, because I just get worked up. When this is done, I’m going to see if I can borrow something like that and identify the rooms that need some work.

Question: In the summer, the hot spots are probably an issue, but in the winter, wouldn’t the cold spots be the issue? Wouldn’t that indicate where the cold air from outside penetrates the insulation and cools the ceiling board itself (subsequently cooling the air close to the ceiling which then drops down and makes your feet cold!)?

Conversely, the hot spots are good because that indicates your room heating up but not losing that heat through the insulation in the ceiling?

You will find they are the same spots.

Yes, I agree, was more referring to the picture that indicates spots of “goodness” while most of the ceiling seems “bad”. I would’ve expected it to be the other way around (unless there literally isn’t any worthwhile insulation).

Correct, as in summer, the heat from outside will travel through and heat your house up, while in winter, the heat will escape. All through the same spots.

Where are you located? I’m in Centurion, so when you are ready, let me know and I’ll come to you. It is very easy and quick to scan an entire house for possible issues.

Unfortunately I’m in Bellville… :sweat_smile: but thanks!

We do go down to Cape Town quite regularly, to visit my son, so maybe not so impossible.

Ah that would be great. I’ll let you know!

There goes the neighborhood … :laughing:

Also in Bellville.

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Are you worried about the 26deg…

DC wires running between MPPT and batteries can quickly reach 50deg…

In the mines we started looking at Temps above 60deg, we did Thermal surveys on a yearly basis and the reports flagged connections or wires above 60… From there my reference points.

Your experience please?

EdIt: I just Google the temp rating of common cables and the general max rating is 90deg with some cables rated at 60deg. I guess that was where the 60deg standard in the mines came from. Personally I have seen that just about every single Flir image has got “hot spots”, I am normally not really worried about anything below 50deg. I will however do a thorough check and try to rectify anything above 50 on a solar system.

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Personally, I am not overly worried, as it was only at 24 degrees, but what struck me as odd was the temp difference between those two spots, versus the rest of the battery interconnect cables.

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I have busbars, considering just the positive busbar I have :
2* 25mm cables to 2 80A MPPT’s
16mm cables to 2* 60A MPPT’s
3 * 50mm cables to a 5kVA Phoenix ( used to be 24V, and I used the same cabling)
4* 50mm cables to 2 * 8KVA Quattros
16 * 25mm cables to batteries.
Various 50mm loops as the busbar is in 3 sections.

All of these cables are lugs and on studs with washers and bolts. Anyway you get the gist, plenty of connections.

My experience is that a poor lug ( originally I didn’t have a hydraulic crimper) or a not tight enough nut isn’t picked up visually, but over time with 300A+ on those busbars, it certainly makes itself known. My busbars are on insulating posts and these melted once before (So, not 26 degrees no).

I suppose it isn’t about what the absolute temperature is (within reason), but what the relative temperature of the connections are. A connection that is way hotter than the norm would identify a potential issue.
As a matter of interest, overhead power lines are load-rated to a theoretical 95 deg C. ( I think a 5km/h breeze is assumed).


So these two guys from Bellville are driving in a car.

Says the one to the other: Man, tune the radio!

His friend waves his hand at the radio while making a hang-ten sign: Howzit radio!

“No man! Turn the radio on!”

…waving hand at radio… Howzit sexy!


Boet … you know that we can call on the guys from Kraaifontein ne … cause when the EFf tried their stunt, they disappeared when it was said the Kraaifonteiners are coming to “tune” the EFF a tune. :slight_smile:

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