Photovoltaic Solar Panel Connectors – Dependable PV Connectivity from elmex

With the drive for greener energy the utilisation of solar power is a popular choice, from the large-scale solar farms you can see dotted around the countryside to small scale solar panel installations fitted to the roof of a house. All these systems require a reliable and secure method of connector technology to ensure the power they create is safely transferred to where it should be.

Where reliability and compatibility matters elmex Photovoltaic (PV) Connectors are a dependable solution, offering a large array of designs to suit a wide variety of applications. Here, we take a quick look at just a small selection of some of the solar panel connectivity solutions manufactured by elmex and available to purchase from Kempston Controls today.

Photovoltaic Connectors

Photovoltaic Straight Connectors

The elmex PV (Photovoltaic) Solar Straight Connectors, with NEC interlock, have been designed for applications in PV power generation systems, featuring a male plug and female socket design and are constructed from a UV resistant flame retardant thermoplastic. These solar panel connectors incorporate a flexible water-tight sealing (providing IP68 protection) and come in male and female connector versions to minimise the chance of incorrect connections.

These hardwearing PV straight connectors are certified for PV solar cables 2.5, 4.0, 6.0 mm² diameter. The cables used should be TUV certified as per standard 2Pfg 1169/EN 50618 to ensure a proper connection.

Photovoltaic Connectors

Photovoltaic Panel Mount Connectors

These PV Solar Panel Connectors, with NEC interlock, are suitable for panel mounting connection in PV power generation applications. Robust, these photovoltaic connectors are constructed from UV resistant flame retardant thermoplastic.

Designed for use in photovoltaic equipment including DC Distribution Blocks, Inverters , String Combiner Boxes , etc. These solar connectors feature a hexagonal nut for fixing and tightening them on to a panel.

A silicon rubber o- ring fits between the panel connector and the wall of the photovoltaic enclosure ensuring protection against the ingress of water & dust. Versatile, these PV panel connectors are compatible with some other brands of PV straight connectors.

Photovoltaic Connectors

Photovoltaic Branch Connectors

PV Solar Branch Connectors have been designed for parallel connection with straight photovoltaic male or female connectors and feature NEC interlocks.

Branch connectors, as the name suggests, have 3 branches, 2 for inputs either male or female and 1 for either male or female output. Constructed from UV resistant flame retardant thermoplastic for applications in PV power generation systems.

When mated, they can be disconnected with an elmex open end spanner. PV branch connectors are compatible with leading international brands of a similar construction.

Photovoltaic Connector Features

  • Rated Voltage 1500V DC
  • Rated Current 25A (2.5 mm²), 30A (4.0 mm², 6.0 mm²)
  • RMS Test Voltage 8kV (1500V)
  • Impulse withstand Voltage 16 kV
  • Degree of Protection IP 67 / IP 68
  • Contact Material – Copper with Tin Plating
  • Ambient Temperature -40° C to +85° C
  • Max. Operating Temp. +110° C
  • Pollution Degree 3
  • Contact Resistance < 0.5 mΩ
  • Insertion Force ≤ 50 N
  • Withdrawal Force ≥ 50 N
  • Locking System Snap-In

Photovoltaic Connectors

Photovoltaic Straight Inline Fuse Connectors

elmex PV Solar Straight Inline Fuse Connectors (EMPV4IFC, EMPV4IFCM and EMPV4IFC) are used in photovoltaic string protection applications. These connectors provide the option of either using a straight male or female connector at one end and a cable at the other or using straight connectors at both ends for string protection with a fuse.

Straight inline fuse connectors have a plug and socket design suitable for 2.5, 4.0, 6.0 mm² size cables and are made from UV resistant flame retardant thermoplastic. Ideal for use in PV power generation systems, they use a gPV(cylindrical) fuse of ø 10 x 38 mm.

Photovoltaic Connectors

Photovoltaic Branch Inline Fuse  Connectors – 1000V

The elmex PV Solar Branch Inline Fuse Connectors (EBWFPVM and EBWFPVF) are utilised for photovoltaic string protection. Branch inline fuse connectors have 3 branches, 2 for inputs either male or female and 1 for output either male or female, with NEC interlocks.

These connectors have a plug and socket design and are constructed using UV & flame retardant thermoplastic and are used in PV power generation system.  PV branch inline fuse connectors are suitable for use with a gPV (Cylindrical) fuse of ø 10 X 38 mm.

Straight and Branch Inline Fuse PV Connector Features

  • Rated Voltage 1000V DC
  • Rated Current 15 A (30 A Branch Connector)
  • RMS Test Voltage 6 kV (1000 V)
  • Impulse withstand Voltage 12 kV (Straight Connector)
  • Degree of Protection IP 68
  • Contact Material Copper Alloy with Tin Plating
  • Ambient Temperature  -45° C to +85° C (-40° C to +85° C Branch Connector)
  • Max. Operating Temp. +110° C
  • Pollution Degree 3
  • Insertion Force <_50 N
  • Withdrawal Force >_50 N
  • Locking System Snap-In

View the elmex PV Range at Kempston Controls


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Battery Storage Fuse Links– Protecting the Power

The demand for electrical power is continually increasing and traditional methods of energy production, such as nuclear, Hydroelectric and coal-fired power stations have been supported by growth of renewable energy technology such as wind, solar and tidal power. As countries all around the world are striving to become more reliant upon efficient and environmentally friendly electrical energy the requirements to store the energy generated by renewable and more traditional methods within battery storage systems is rapidly becoming a necessity.

Modern storage

Modern battery storage systems are modular, easy to deploy close to power generation networks and can even be retrofitted into existing systems. The batteries contained within these power banks can contain Lead Acid, lithium-ion, AGM and NiCad and any installation will feature a Battery Management System (BMS) to ensure good battery health, ensuring the batteries cannot be overcharged or over-discharged. The BMS, together with high-quality Battery Storage Fuses are designed to provide the battery storage installation with protection from dangerous overcurrents and short circuits.

The expansion of this power storage network is having a demanding effect on electrical system architecture and as a consequence their overcurrent protection needs. Battery storage system protection requirements differ compared to typical grid-connected AC systems, here they are required to operate with DC systems which may have high fault currents and a number of lower overcurrent instances.

The forefront of design

Eaton has been at the forefront of this drive, continually innovating and making sure battery storage systems for schools, offices, shopping centres and large scale utility storage systems operate safely. With their extensive knowledge and experience behind them, Eaton has created a range of Bussmann Battery Storage Fuse Links that are have been specifically designed and tested to safely protect battery storage systems with high DC voltages and low fault currents.

Battery Storage Fuses

The BSF-NH Range of Fuse Links

Eaton Bussmann’s BSF-NH series of Battery Storage Fuse Links have been specifically designed to isolate and protect battery array combiners and disconnects. The BSF-NH range is capable of interrupting low overcurrents that are associated with faulted battery storage systems. Available in bolted tag or bladed fuse link versions.

A range of associated fuse bases available in  SD1 (250 A), SD2 (400 A) and SD3 (630 A) sizes and shroud kits, fuse extractors, microswitches, neutral links and phase barrier kits suitable for the BSF-NH range of Battery Storage Fuse Links are available to help complete your installation.

BSF-NH Fuse Technical Data

Voltage rating 1000 Vdc

Current rating 63 to 400 A

Breaking capacity 100 kA

Time constant 4.5 ms t 100 kA

Compact design

Low power loss

Fuse sizes – NH1 (63-160 A), NH2 (160-250 A), NH3 (315-400 A)

Operating class – gBat proposed for full range fuse links for the protection of battery systems

Standards IEC 60269-7, RoHS and REACH compliant

Download the datasheet


The BSF-3XL Range of Fuse Links

Battery Storage Fuse 3XL


Designed for more demanding tasks, the BSF-3XL range of Battery Storage Fuse Links have been designed to isolate and protect high-power battery array combiners and disconnects. The BSF-3XL range is capable of interrupting low overcurrents that are associated with faulted battery storage systems.

Available in bolted tag or bladed fuse link versions. A fuse base (SD3L-S-PV) for knife bladed terminal fuse links and microswitches for the BSF-3XL range of Battery Storage Fuse Links are available to help complete your installation.




BSF-3XL Fuse Technical Data

Voltage rating 1500 Vdc

Current rating 250 to 500 A

Breaking capacity 100 kA

Time constant 4.5 ms t 100 kA

Fuse sizes – 3L

Operating class – gBat proposed for full range fuse links for the protection of battery systems

Standards IEC 60269-7, RoHS and REACH compliant

Download the datasheet


If you are installing a Battery Storage System you will need to ensure that you have the right Fuse Links and accessories for the job. Kempston Controls, as a supplier partner for Eaton, has access to the entire Eaton Bussmann range of Battery Storage Fuse Links and we can provide you with all the assistance you need to help you choose the right products. Give our sales team a call on +44 (0) 1933 411411 or email them at to discuss your Battery Storage Fuse Link requirements.

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Wind Farms in a Windy Place

The wind comes in many forms, from a soft gentle breeze to a raging tornado and everything in between, something we can all be familiar with to some extent, but did you know that wind is a form of solar energy?  The wind is created by a combination of a few particular events, in simple terms – the sun heating the atmosphere irregularly, cold air sinking and warm air rising, features of the Earth’s surface and the rotation of the earth itself. The flow of this generated wind and its speed and pattern can vary a great deal, being modified by large open bodies of water, vegetation and differences in natural terrain.

Harnessing the power contained in the wind is a simple theory, one that has been used by mankind for hundreds of years with early incarnations of wind power filling the sails of ships and sending them across the seas to distant lands and turning the blades of a windmill to grind grains. But in the case of wind farms, instead of grinding the wheels of industry and providing propulsion, they provide the means to power modern life with a lower carbon footprint than other methods of power generation such as gas, nuclear and coal. Now, just like that old windmill, the blades of a wind turbine rotate when struck by the wind with even a gentle breeze being enough to cause those blades to turn and start generating electricity.

Turning on the Energy

The energy contained in the wind is turned into electricity by using the aerodynamic force imposed on the rotor blades, which have been cleverly designed to work the same as the wings of an aeroplane. As wind passes across the surface of the wind turbine rotor blades the air pressure on one side decreases, this difference in air pressure creates both lift and drag on the blades and once the force of lift is greater than the drag the blades of the turbine will begin to turn.

Once the blades of a wind turbine are spinning this begins to turn a shaft contained in the nacelle, which is oblong structure behind the rotor blades, housing and protecting the generator, gearbox and drive train. The generator converts the rotational, or kinetic energy of the drive shaft into electrical energy. Before reaching the National Grid or if the power is being used locally, this wind-generated electrical energy is first passed through a step-up transformer. Wind turbines come in all shapes and sizes and can be found in many different locations, from micro-turbines that can be seen powering small homes, to enormous off-shore wind farms that are visible off the coast of UK, all of these wind turbines use the same principles to generate electricity.

Here is an interactive map showing the locations of all the forms of renewable energy in the UK.

Two kinds of Turbine

Wind turbines are generally available in two different styles and the one that springs to mind first is the horizontal-axis turbine, featuring 3 blades and a pivoting turbine atop a large tower that can turn to face into the wind.

Darrieus Turbine used as a wind farm

Not seen too often in the UK, are vertical axis turbines, available in a variety of styles including the Darrieus model which resembles a whisk. These particular turbines are omnidirectional which means they don’t rely on their orientation regarding wind direction to begin producing electricity.

How much Electricity?

Generally speaking, the faster the wind blows the faster the wind turbine rotors turn and generate more electricity, at around 15 metres per second maximum power output is generally achieved. Conversely, if the wind is too strong, somewhere north of 25 metres per second, it may actually damage the wind turbine, in instances like this certain models can shut themselves down to prevent damage.

Ultimately, generating the maximum amount of power consistently depends upon a reliable wind source. The locations of wind farms aren’t just haphazard but are chosen based upon harnessing a consistent and reliable source of wind all year round. You can find them located at the top of a hill with lots of open space surrounding it, such as those found in Scotland and in large offshore farm installations like those visible from the shore in Norfolk.

Offshore wind farm

Your average land-based wind turbine has a capacity of around 2-3 megawatts, producing 6 million kilowatt-hours of electricity or more each and every year, which is roughly enough to meet the electrical demands of around 1500 homes. The larger turbines, which can be found in wind farms with rotors spanning 120 metres can produce as much as 7.5 megawatts and are designed to generate power for the National Grid. Rumour has it that 15-megawatt installations are coming in the near future with 20 megawatts wind turbines on the distant horizon.

Is it efficient?

Your typical wind turbine operates at around 30-45% efficient which rises to 50% efficiency when the wind allows it to perform optimally. Over a one-year period, an onshore wind turbine will typically generate about 24% of its theoretical maximum output, 41% for offshore, which is known as its capacity factor. Meanwhile the capacity factor of more conventional power stations averages between 50%-80%, due to maintenance and breakdown time however, no power plant can realistically generate power for 100% of the time.

Large wind farm turbine


The UK, home of the wind farm

The geographical location of the UK, perched on the North-Western edge of Europe and due to depressions in the Atlantic means certain areas experience a fair deal of windy days over the course of a year, with Scotland being the windiest place in the whole of Europe. With the wind blowing all-year-round wind power is a reliable renewable source of electricity and with the added bonus of it being windier in winter means that wind turbines are producing more electricity when society as a whole is using more energy to heat homes and so forth.  The UK is certainly well placed to benefit from the use of onshore and offshore wind farms and should go some way into helping it meet and even exceed its energy production targets from renewable means. Wind farms are also considered to be fairly low on the carbon footprint scale when it comes to their installation and use, having one of the smallest out of the other renewable sources such as solar and hydroelectric.

Increased Output

In 2018 approximately 15% of electricity generated in the UK was entirely from wind power, back in 2013, just five short years before, the percentage was just a tiny bit above 7%. In the first quarter of 2019, that figure is 18.40% and according to the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy report, is an  increase in wind turbine energy generation of 9.2% compared to the first quarter of 2018.   At the time of writing, there were 9929 wind turbines in total situated within the UK’s borders, producing 58,319,193 Mwh per year which is enough to power 15, 424, 277 average homes. Things are moving, and moving fast (like the blades on a wind turbine I guess) when it comes to renewable energy production, which in terms of helping to reduce carbon emissions and our dependence on fossil fuels can only be a good thing.

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