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48V Power just curious

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Posts 26
Dave Compton Posted: 04-09-2019 12:40 PM

Thank you for taking the time to answer all my earlier questions. I've ordered a MyT and it's 4-6 weeks away from making me a happy camper.

I wondered about something and I couldn't find a satisfactory answer elsewhere.

Why is it that your power supplies are +48V versus 12? On some other forums (CN) it seems to cause no end of arguments and even some complaints.

I don't really mind because I will not be taking the mount portable to a remote site. And these days, finding a 56V Li battery is pretty easy.  Or even an inverter that runs off a 12V source.

But I'm sure back when you first started, 48V caused some controversy. I'm a little technical so I hope this question isn't too nerdy.

Is it because it was a standard in the telecom and audio worlds? Was that something familiar to you when you (the Bisques) designed the mounts?

Does it have to do with being able supplying more power to DC motors? 

Or does it have to do with being better able to filter and stabilize a supply to make the signaling less noisy/ more reliable or precise?

I realize your main line of scopes were put in observatories mostly, with the MyT being a great portable later addition. So maybe was it originally for purely engineering reasons and in a dome it didn't matter?

Thanks, just curious.

 

Top 10 Contributor
Posts 3,761
Software Bisque Employee

Dave Compton:
I've ordered a MyT…

Congratulations on choosing a Paramount MYT Robotic Telescope Mount!

Dave Compton:
Why is it that your power supplies are +48V versus 12?

I'll leave the history aspect to someone else to address. But as far as the merits, higher voltage is more efficient (less percentage of voltage drop over the same wire length) and allows greater ampacity wattage vs. wire gauge. This further means that higher-voltage and higher-torque motors can be used. Bottom line, as far as control system design (including cabling) and performance, higher voltage is better.

Dave Compton:
On some other forums (CN) it seems to cause no end of arguments and even some complaints.

I admit that I don't personally frequent other forums, so I'm unfamilar with any such arguments or complaints. On our own forums there are sometimes questions about powering the mounts, but not, that I've noticed, arguments and complaints.

Dave Compton:
I don't really mind because I will not be taking the mount portable to a remote site.

While a lot of Paramount owners have permanent, or semi-permanent installations, many also use their mounts in a portable fashion—especially the Paramount MYT. See this thread for a great discussion of Paramount field power solutions.

Dave Compton:
And these days, finding a 56V Li battery is pretty easy.

Yes, a 56V Li-ion battery is a commonly used option for portable operation. In fact, we offer this EGO™ Battery to Paramount Power Adaptor for this reason.

Dave Compton:
Or even an inverter that runs off a 12V source.

A particularly inefficient option. Read that thread I linked to above for much better alternatives.

Brian S. Rickard
Software Bisque, Inc.

Top 500 Contributor
Posts 42

You say inverter, but I assume you mean a Boost Converter.  I looked at this option briefly, but opted to stay away from it.  They are notoriously unstable, and unreliable.  I hung an Oscilloscope on one, and was shocked at the voltage creep up on start, spikes and brown out on turning off.

I run the SB Supplied 48v AC adapter, connected to a small computer UPS so that if I lose AC power for a brief period, I will not drop power to the mount.  Also, when no AC is available, I run off a 7.5AH EGO battery and the SB Adapter.  Another option could be 4x12V SLA or AGM batteries in series.  Do not run Li Ion batteries in series, if you go that route get one that is designed for 48v ( the Battery Management Systems in the Li Ion packs need to see all the cells at once).

 

 

Not Ranked
Posts 26

Thanks for the replies and the good advice. I will probably go with AC power on an UPSjust to ward off Murphy if I can.

I was just wondering about the need for 48V versus 12. Looks like steady power that can provide juice for the motors is plenty good rationale.

Interestingly many of the new electric and hybrid cars are running two voltage busses. One at 12 for legacy stuff, but 48 V is used for energy recovery, active suspension parts, and other bits where they need more power than 12V can manage. I guess it’s not just a bisque thing.

Top 25 Contributor
Posts 1,576

It’s all a bit humorous in the big picture. The reason most other mounts run 12v is because they want you to run them off car batteries. The cheapest Celestron mounts don’t even come with an AC wall wart. A better question is, why don’t all mounts run off 48V? Maybe they will, someday. The most voracious arguments over on CN used to be AP hand control vs. SB hand control and that Paramounts were computer dependent. Well, the second that AP decided to ala carte their mounts and charge $1000 for their HC, using a laptop seems to be the most natural thing in the world. Too funny. 

Top 25 Contributor
Posts 2,008
Universal Subscription Licensee

For the engineering side of it 48Volts means that one needs 1/4 the current to deliver the same power.. This means that the power consumed by the resistance in the wire is 1/16th of a 12volt system supplying the same power. The motors and control system are designed I think to handle up to 64 volts thus the EGO battery is a good alternative. My 7.5 amp hr ego battery runs my MYT for 2 nights and takes less than an hour to recharge.

Roy

 www.roystarman.com

I am not employed by Software Bisque, but I am a satisfied customer.

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