SSEG and NRS regulations

Titbit 1: I’m told that new regulations are being finalised to get a CoC, according to my Sparkie.

Titbit 2: I see that the inverter sizes have increased.

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Guess the question is: If your microwave and kettle switch off at the same time, you will feed back 4kW for a short amount of time. Is that outside of the 60A breaker’s allowance? I.e. what is the time limit for your inverter to figure itself out again and reduce the backfeed?

Also, I see the issue of the charging current from the grid on the battery. It requires password protection on the setting and a limit to 25% of your maximum incoming current. This might also be an issue?

Jip, will feed back 4kw for a couple of seconds, maybe 5-10sec.Inconsequential.

The password protection on the max charge amps, interesting.

I assume that max battery charge amps are AC amps, if so, then 230v x 15a = ±3.5kw.
That could get interesting.

Exactly. @plonkster would probably need to introduce some password protection on the Victron software soon. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

You do have to log in with password protection on the new VictronConnect desktop app. The older VEConfig I don’t think have a password IIRC.

Hmmm and I guess if you operate in Optimized mode (with a relatively high minSoC, like 50%), the chance of ever asking Eskom to charge you up is really low. However, it isn’t possible to limit the inverter’s “inverting” just on the AC in, or is it? Because I’d still like to push back up to 5kVA, but I don’t need to take in more than 3.5kVA ever.

but the whole password is dumb, anyone can search default passwords for systems. Yes you can change the defaults but that is a small nightmare for the next installer as well as normally no one keeps track of the changed passwords or you can’t get hold of the other installer so you end up resetting the device and reprogramming.

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Agreed. It is a ridiculous rule. It seems better (if they feel like they have to ensure something) to enforce the installation of a minimum amount of panels and batteries. Then they are highly unlikely to experience someone being forced to charge their batteries from the grid.

My personal view is that, should these systems be properly specced, none of this should be an issue for the grid.

A password is not necessarily dumb, even if it is a simple one that a sufficiently determined person can find easily. Or “root” or hack around. What it does is remove “accidental” from the vocabulary of someone who removes the limit, which in turn has certain legal ramifications. I’m very glad they went with a simple password rather than something harder than that…

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So here is a question for the guys that run grid tied with no feedback…

I’m busy getting all me equipment together for a 10kva victron setup, but here comes the nuisance, I’m going to run Multiplus and not multiplus II…
Thus I’m not allowed to connect to the grid…
Now I see that they have listed the Ziehl relay as an approved anti islanding device, but in the notes they have stated it can only be used with an inverter on the same list. Which then makes it absolutely bloodywill useless… Isn’t the whole reason why you would install the relay to be able to use a non-compliant inverter??? Now using it with an approved inverter is useless and you can just aswell only use the inverter… Feels like they are missing the whole point… or I am…

Would I be able to get an installation signed off with the multi one’s and the Ziehl relay?
Am I the one not understanding how this works or is it worth fighting with City about it?
I can get the CoC for the installation, but not sure in how much detail city will inspect.

I will go off grid for starters, and run my sub DB from the PV system where after I will register for off grid as per their instructions obtained.

So I guess I then have time to apply for the grid tied connection with the relay and then have time to fight them on it.
We have a few registered electrical engineers in our company whom I can get on my side to write some letters…

@Rautenk is my suggestion to approach and discuss in more detail, being an engineer that signs off solar systems as per regulations.

Edit: Because with the Zhiel, when Ryno “gets it” a ton of Multiplus’es could be used legally grid-tied.

Came up before on another forum. What I can tell you is that NRS097 appears to be based somewhat on VDE-AR-N-4105 (the German code), and in the German code you can only use an inverter/switch combo if that combo has been tested together. The Multi and Ziehl has been tested together for the German code (you will find it in the grid code list in VE.Configure) but not for NRS097. And hence that combo cannot be used. At least, that would be the technical reason. I’m not always sure if that is how the admin guys understand it. I think they just look if it is on the list… and both needs to be on the list. Which is probably a good enough approximation of the requirement.

20210423EskomApplicationFormSSEG_2021V1.1.pdf (199.9 KB)

So eventually found the document from eskom for its customers to apply for solar to grid connection. So it seems you need to pay R2140 just to get a quote thereafter you need the special meter which they don’t disclose the price. Plus you need the embeded generation compliance test report which I guess a normal sparky wont be able to give.

In some other docs I read on the eskom site it mentions normal prepaid is not allowed to be connected to solar installation so basically they want everyone to register their installations and pay to get a new meter. If you are connected with anything other than the new meter that gives time of use fees then its not allowed and can be fined.

Sorry for Necro posting, but as far as I understand it there is a good reason for not allowing non-NRS097 approved inverters to be used with the Ziehl relay. NRS097 covers much more than just the anti-islanding protection and the grid connection. So even if the Ziehl relay can comply with the grid connection and anti-islanding portions of the NRS097 regulations, that doesn’t mean the non-compliant inverter suddenly complies with all the other parts of NRS097. Also, I am skeptical that the relay will be able to comply with the anti-islanding part of the regulations since it could only use passive methods (such as ROCOF or voltage) to determine if an island has been created which is not sufficient, Inverters need to use active methods to determine if an island has been created (there are several active methods)

Thank snot we are under CoCT rules and regs … methinks I will seriously look at off-grid for Eskom gets a new “boss” and it can all alter? Nee dankie.

yip that’s exactly what I am contemplating, however that is going to cost quite a bit more :cry:

I’m sitting here wondering … you know the DB’s are split between Critical Loads vs Rest of the house right?

So now I wonder, when one does that, the Critical loads goes onto off-grid, the rest stays on Eskom … I wonder if that will fly?

Cause loads like kitchen is cheaper on Eskom. Pump, if small enough, can be on solar and when Eskom trips, relay switches pump off to save “batteries” or some such.

See where I’m going?

yes so basically have a off grid panel and a grid panel. I did think of that but its kind of pointless because you cant feed excess to counter those big loads, also Im on a billed account so it doesn’t get rid of those nasty connection fees. I like your thinking though, i did see something along those lines on the eskom site. Basically you can have a change over switch between mains and inverter.

I do something similar:
Off-grid Phoenix + PV Inverter system on the same battery bank as Hybrid multi’s.
Two systems charging and drawing off one battery bank.

The PV inverter gives the off-grid system more kVA during the day, and because the Phoenix is a bi-directional inverter/charger, excess PV power also charges the batteries.
This power is then available to the hybrid system by virtue of being on the same battery bank.

CoCT have this:


I highlighted the applicable item. You can basically register a UPS as off-grid SSEG. In this case the Inverter (UPS) has the change-over built in and can automatically switch the load between Grid and Inverter. The nice thing is it doesn’t have to do this only when the grid has failed. It can intelligently switch over to battery and PV during the day for example or if the battery SOC is high enough and then switch back to grid when needed. Hopefully Eskom will also allow these types of systems to be registered as off-grid.