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Thread: Are There Adverse Health Problems with Living In Proximity to PV Panels?

  1. #1
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    Default Are There Adverse Health Problems with Living In Proximity to PV Panels?

    As someone who has studied the electromagnetic radiation issues as they pertain to human health, I have learned over the years, the electrical lines that run to the house from utility companies ... the BX cable that runs from where electricity wires come to the house, and along the BX cable that runs to the circuit box can emit a rather strong field 40 to 80 millirads depending upon what the house draw is (how many appliances are on in the house) and that this field can be measured many feet from the wall. As you know, while background is around 2 millirads, it is not suggested that the workplace exposure be much above that. So 40 to 80 is of considerable concern. The closer one gets to the source the higher the strength of the radiation. So sleeping near where a line comes into your house and where it runs to the breaker box is not a good idea.

    The medical thinking on the subject, by the way, is that living in a strong magnetic field forces your body to start to vibrate in sympathy with the rate of vibration of the strong EMF. Your body has its own vibratory rate, and it is not meant to vibrate at a different rate. While your body can recover and come back to its own vibration rates by leaving the field, staying in the field for too long a time is thought to cause molecular instability due to being in the field for too long. And thus, it thought to create issues akin to other forms of radiation exposure, mainly that it cells lose their equilibrium and become unstable for vibrating to long at a rate they are not meant to vibrate at. This is the medical thinking, and this is the reason one looks at the strength of the fields to which one is exposed.

    I have been attempting to learn whether or not PV panels generate a similar fields. I would like to find out whether there have been any studies on the fields generated by solar panels. After searching the Internet extensively, I have found nothing at all on the subject, not even anything that states that PV panels are safe in this regard. If it is safe and free from electromagnetic radiation, would it not be good idea to publicize that. If there have been no studies or research, then that would be equally good to know.

    Does the fact that panels produce DC reduce negate the fields associated with regular electrical power, and would the fields then be generated at the inverter, where the DC gets converted to AC? Another words, if the panels themselves are free of concern, do the inverters generate such fields? Knowing what to isolate oneself from would be useful if such fields are generated anywhere along the line.

    By the way, while the concern may be due to my ignorance on how solar panels really work, and therefore, can accept the fact that this is the reason there is so little to be found on the subject, I am still surprised that novices like myself, who are in great abundance to be sure, haven't brought up this issue before, and that these questions are not being asked online at all.

    Any input at all on this issue would be greatly appreciated, as I am actively considering an installation of PV panels for my home.

    Any input on this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Hi Sadhu, thank you for joining Solar Panel Talk!

    I found an article regarding this topic, and basically what it was explaining is that people who have electromagnetic hypersensitivity (those who get sick from cell phones, computers, etc) could be affected. It mentioned the inverter gave off the most radiation.

    Not sure how credible the source is, but here is the article for you to check out: http://www.eiwellspring.org/SolarEMFHazard.pdf

    Oh, and I moved your topic into the "General Discussion" forum for more views.

  3. #3
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    Panels put out DC voltage. If you twist the DC wires, (3 twist per foot) that will negate any stray magnetic fields. If you place the twisted pair in a STEEL (not aluminum) conduit, the steel will block all magnetic field.

    Hope this helps.

    (Xantrex makes Charge controllers, grid tie and regular inverters that have FCC class B cert - less radiated power that other mfg's, MorningStar also has a class B MPPT CC coming out late 2009)
    Since the dawn of time it has been mankind's dream to blot out the sun.
    Montgomery Burns

    "Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it."

    spreadsheet based voltage drop calculator:
    http://www.solar-guppy.com/download/...calculator.zip
    http://www.solarpaneltalk.com/showth...oss-calculator

    http://www.mike-burgess.org/PVinfo_2.html

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,
    battery lugs http://tinyurl.com/LMR-BigLug
    Setting up batteries http://tinyurl.com/LMR-NiFe

    gear :
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV || || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

  4. #4
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    Default Health Effects

    Do you the kind of field strength we are talking about from say 18 panels on the roof? Does anyone? What about at the inverter (not the exact amount but the range possible from 18 to 24 panels)?

    Actually, I have my BX (regular 100 Amp Service ) shileded on the outside of the house, but I can still measure 40 to 80 millirads inside the house so that shielding does nothing for regular power lines.

    What is your source of information for your comments? Where did you come up the solution you mention in your comments? I'm actually trying to find out if there has been any studies or research that can confirm what kind of radiation is produced at what kind of field strength. You sound familiar with the issue. Have you come upon any studies? Has anyone? I am trying to base my decision on some kind independent research or study that has been conducted somewhere. But I can't find ANY at the moment.

    - Sadhu

  5. #5
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    > What is your source of information for your comments?
    > Where did you come up the solution you mention in your comments?

    I'm an electronics engineer, and deal with interference problems daily.

    Wires inside the house walls, are never shielded. Thinwall aluminum conduit is non-ferrous, and will not stop magnetic fields.
    To measure in your house, turn off all your breakers, this stops the power flowing through the wires inside. The alarm clock next to your bed, the fridge in the kitchen and the neighbors microwave, will all radiate power.

    What do you do with the DC power from the PV's ? Charge controller? Grid-Tie inverter?

    Mike
    Since the dawn of time it has been mankind's dream to blot out the sun.
    Montgomery Burns

    "Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it."

    spreadsheet based voltage drop calculator:
    http://www.solar-guppy.com/download/...calculator.zip
    http://www.solarpaneltalk.com/showth...oss-calculator

    http://www.mike-burgess.org/PVinfo_2.html

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,
    battery lugs http://tinyurl.com/LMR-BigLug
    Setting up batteries http://tinyurl.com/LMR-NiFe

    gear :
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV || || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

  6. #6
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    Default Installation is at Proposal Stage

    Mike,

    I doubt I can answer you questions about the installation. I can see that the proposal lists 18 PV Panelsand the Interver is listed as
    1 SMA America, SB3000US (240V) 3kW 240vac Sunny Boy Utility Interactive Inverter with Display. But aside from that, I'm in the dark about the inverter.

    System Description is listed as
    3.150 kW DC Power (STC)
    2.736 kW (PTC)
    2.613 kW AC Power (CEC Size)

    If there is anything else I can dig up for you, I would be happy to try to find that spec by calling the company that gave me the quote.

    At the risk of being a pain, I have to reiterate that I find it odd that there are no articles on the Internet (at least none that I can find) that talk about the issue of solar panel/inverter and wiring and electromagnetic radiation, and health effects pro or con of living in close proximity to them. If the risk is low, then wouldn't it be of some use to the industry for them to publicize that fact? The lack of any public studies worries me, and the fact that Internet searches come up empty seems like a red flag. You'd just think that there would be something to cite regarding health effects both the pro and the con. But I still can't find anything, which was certainly unexpected. Anyway, hope I'm not a pain.

    You were somewhat re-assuring, but I was hoping to find some comments by folks were completely uninvested in the success or failure of the technology. That hasn't happened. Still, I do greatly appreciate your comments, none the less.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sadhu View Post
    the Interver is listed as
    1 SMA America, SB3000US (240V) 3kW 240vac Sunny Boy Utility Interactive Inverter with Display. But aside from that, I'm in the dark about the inverter.

    System Description is listed as
    3.150 kW DC Power (STC)
    2.736 kW (PTC)
    2.613 kW AC Power (CEC Size)
    The DC wires from the PV to the inverter, will radiate some sort of signal. It might be at 60hz or an even higher frequency, as the inverter likely uses some multi step system for switching the DC into AC. Looks like purely grid-tie, no batteries.

    A setup like this, only the SMA factory could say for sure, or you may just want to get an EM field meter, and measure a similar install on a bright noon day and see what it produces for a field. This is way too variable to guess at.

    Twisted pair in steel conduit will GREATLY reduce radiated power in both DC and AC wire runs. The wire existing in the walls, is likely not shielded at all.
    Since the dawn of time it has been mankind's dream to blot out the sun.
    Montgomery Burns

    "Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it."

    spreadsheet based voltage drop calculator:
    http://www.solar-guppy.com/download/...calculator.zip
    http://www.solarpaneltalk.com/showth...oss-calculator

    http://www.mike-burgess.org/PVinfo_2.html

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,
    battery lugs http://tinyurl.com/LMR-BigLug
    Setting up batteries http://tinyurl.com/LMR-NiFe

    gear :
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV || || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

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