advice about radio interference please

Submitted: Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 17:59
ThreadID: 104479 Views:2580 Replies:5 FollowUps:12
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i have fitted 2x 80 watt solar panels to the roof of the vehicle and a mppt controller,works fine,only trouble is i cannot use am frequency on the car radio due to stattic/interference.(Was the same in previous vehicle)
uhf two way,hf and fm radio no interference.
can anyone suggest a fix so that i may listen to am radio stations when out and about.

Thankyou for any replies.
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Reply By: lin q - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:04

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:04
Congratulations you have successfully installed solar energy equipment, installed in this area is very complicated, and I hope you post more functionality to improve
AnswerID: 518733

Follow Up By: pepper2 - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:17

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:17
i am sorry lin i dont understand your reply
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FollowupID: 798629

Follow Up By: Ross M - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:52

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:52
lin q
Installing solar does take some time but isn't complicated.

pepper2.
Possibly the switching of the MPPT is what is causing the interference on AM band.
The system may benefit from having a DC line filter added either before, or after, or both both sides of the MPPT.
It would have to be heavy wiring conductor so no resistance to the dc flow is seem by either the MPPT or the battery.

One of the forum members is a radio repair tech and may have some options.

Cheers
Ross M
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Reply By: Member - Jefec (WA) - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:56

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 18:56
You could try the clip on ferrite suppressors see Jaycar. Ive used them on leads to cooker igniter and water pump in caravan with some success. My guess is it is the MPPT can check with small am transistor radio in close proximity. Good luck. Cheers
AnswerID: 518737

Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 13:07

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 13:07
I have used them on LED trailer lights with no success!

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Reply By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 19:01

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 19:01
Hi Pepper,

Have you isolated the cause, that is have you found whether it is the solar regulator or the panels causing the interference.

I would assume it is the regulator but you need to be sure.

If it is the regulator you could mount it in a metal box and ground that box to earth.
In other words place it in a Farraday Cage.

If the regulator is already in a metal housing, try grounding that housing.

This is a question more up Peter Ds (Nomadic Navara) alley, if he is about.

What about it Peter D. ??.

Cheers, Bruce
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AnswerID: 518738

Follow Up By: pepper2 - Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 19:23

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2013 at 19:23
Havent thought of a farradays cage might try it.thankyou.
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Follow Up By: Member - bbuzz (NSW) - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 08:32

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 08:32
Isn't the AM band being switched off like the analogue TV?
Won't be able to listen to it!

bill
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:09

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:09
Am also interested. I thought that they didn't know what to do in remote areas. May still need the HF AM band. VHF and UHF for general population coverage is fine in populated areas. But not in the bush. Interesting. Hmmm

Mainly posted to watch this topic.

Phil
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:27

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:27
I got my answer. What we commonly refer to at the moment as "AM" will be switched off. However the content or broadcasters will still be transmitting their programs. The transmission will use a new mode either, DRM or DRM+. It will still be in the MF band and still available "in the bush". We will need a new radio to receive and convert the DRM modulation to audio.

From a paper at ACMA: ACMA - Digital Radio

Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) is another digital radio standard that is gaining international support and may be seen as complementary to DAB+. DRM was initially developed to operate in broadcasting bands below 30 MHz, including the current medium frequency (531-1602 kHz) AM broadcast band. The latest version, often referred to as DRM+, operates in the bands below 30 MHz as well as in VHF frequencies up to 108 MHz. Australia currently uses these VHF frequencies for analog FM radio broadcasts.


Phil
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:50

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 10:50
Does anyone know what DRM's susceptibility to interference is like?

Phil
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 11:54

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 11:54
Jim,

Was getting a bit worried with all this talk of AM being switched off, so checked the ABC's site. No planned "turn-off" date at this stage, and "upgrading of transmitters would depend on funding" unquote. So no doubt remote areas will have analogue AM/FM for some years to come.

Also said that "digital radio offers interference free, digital quality sound" unquote.

Can imagine they would be keen to remove/upgrade many of the isolated transmitters, that are pumping out 10kW every day. Must be some cost savings with digital radio technology?

http://www.abc.net.au/reception/radio/digitalradio.htm

Also mention of DAB upgrade for current AM/FM car radios. Imagine JB Hi-Fi & other outlets would be rubbing their hands together if we all had to fork out for new in car entertainment!!!

Bob.


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Can't remember most of it.

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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 06:43

Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 06:43
I wouldn't race out and get a DRM receiver just yet. There are no, zero, nilch plans to switch off AM and FM for at least 35 years.

DRM is primarily aimed at Short Wave at the moment.

With the huge take up success of DAB ( not), the broadcasters will have a riot if the government even hints at an earlier date.

DAB, and I suspect DRM are technologies with no need and little market and DRM is not compatible with low volume, low density markets like Australia.
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 09:06

Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 09:06
Neither would I. It also covers the broadcast band from 531-1602 kHz.

They may never do it. That's a lot of area and cost for such a small return. Especially if Aunty if was privatised.

I was looking at getting one of those PK Loop antennas. Simple question: Do they work?

I would expect that they work with the car AM and any external radio antenna. Do they?

Phil
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FollowupID: 798700

Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 15:21

Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 15:21
Phil I have a similar Chinese loop Antenna from Tecsun.

Tecsun loop antenna

Basically the same thing but production built and about $30 delivered.

Does it work, you bet it does. You will not believe how good it is. I have a few radios and just sit them inside the loop.

You can tune into a station and get nothing other than noise. Put the radio in this loop, tune the antenna and you will get a great full strength signal. If your radio takes external antenna that works too. I promise you won't believe how good it is. No batteries either. I have used it in the outback, in the high country and in NSW. I would not go camping without it.

It is directional so you have to turn it around for best signal, but it can also eliminate other noise like a fridge or Solar charger.

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FollowupID: 798730

Reply By: The Bantam - Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 21:29

Thursday, Sep 26, 2013 at 21:29
Back to the original problem.

The solar panel is a fairly straight forward device and is unlikly to be causing the inetefeerance.

The MPPT regulator on the other hand is a prime candidate.

In spite of there being specific regulations on the matter ( "the electromagnetic compatability framework")

There are any number of devices out there that produce huge quantities of spurious radiation....I've been involved in some ripper stories...like a client who had tV channels wiped out by equipment streets away.

ANYway....if the MPPT reg is producing spurios in lrage enough quantities to cause the problems you discribe.

Don't piss about.....you wont fix it short of a complete rediesgn.

take said reg....throw it over you left sholder, spung it with a spade, smash it with a hammer and burn it...that should fix the problem.

The replace it with a good quality item.

cheers

AnswerID: 518778

Reply By: Member - Boobook - Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 06:50

Friday, Sep 27, 2013 at 06:50
Almost any controller, PWM or MPPT will give you varying degrees of grief if you run them in you car and the radio.

Short of a complete rewire and careful planning that *may* work, my suggestion is to have a Normally Closed relay in the inputs of of the solar regulator between the solar panels and the reg.

The relay is powered by the ignition so it opens when the car is running ( and listen to the radio). The solar is then disconnected. It reconnects and charges when the car is not running.

Given the Alternator is doing the charging when you are running, there should be no problem with the charge, and it will be topped up when you stop.

No Radio interference when driving.


AnswerID: 518784

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