What type of inverter is needed to power a induction cooktop?

Thread Starter

DvDriel

Joined Jul 26, 2019
2
Dear all,

This is the first post for me on this forum, so if I should rephrase my question or ask the question in a different section please let me know. My background is in embedded programming and I know quite little about power conversion, therefore this thread.

We are converting a van into a camper van that is going to be outfitted with a solar system. I am designing and building the electrical system myself (sourcing components and wiring). I really want to be able to use a single pit induction cooktop in the van powered by the battery pack.

A short overview of the system:
- solar panel array: 400W (600W in the future)
- solar charge controller: Victron bluesolar 150/35
- battery pack: 24v 300ah lifePO4 (lithium-ion)
- 24v to 12v DC DC converter (for 12v appliances like a fan)
- 24v DC to 230v AC 1500W inverter (type and brand to be decided)

The specific question for this thread(I have many more ;)) is about the inverter. Since our budget is quite tight I want to know what type of inverter is needed to power an induction cooktop. I know that powering motors most often requires a pure sine wave type inverter, but what about induction cooktops. Next to that we will use the inverter to charge some appliances like our laptops and phones, I assume those won't give any trouble?

Questions:
- Does anybody know what type of inverter would work? Modified sine waves at 1500W are a lot cheaper than the pure sine wave types.
- Is one type more efficient than the other? Since everything relies on the power we have in our batteries we want to be as efficient as possible.
- Are there any other appliances that you might use in a van that most definitely won't work with a modified sine wave?
- Can anyone recommend a brand of inverters?

Many thanks in advance,

Daan
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
9,576
Welcome to AAC!
I want to know what type of inverter is needed to power an induction cooktop. I know that powering motors most often requires a pure sine wave type inverter, but what about induction cooktops. Next to that we will use the inverter to charge some appliances like our laptops and phones, I assume those won't give any trouble?
Many appliances will operate from a modified sine wave inverter. Unfortunately, no one can tell you if any your intended devices are exceptions. The only way to be certain is to try them.

If you're planning on a 24VDC to 230VAC inverter, your appliances must operate at 230VAC.
Questions:
- Does anybody know what type of inverter would work? Modified sine waves at 1500W are a lot cheaper than the pure sine wave types.
Most manufacturers don't specify whether they'll operate with a modified sine wave power source, so you need to inquire with them or try them.
- Is one type more efficient than the other? Since everything relies on the power we have in our batteries we want to be as efficient as possible.
From the modified sine wave waveforms I've seen, the difference would be small.
- Are there any other appliances that you might use in a van that most definitely won't work with a modified sine wave?
My experience is that most appliances will operate from modified sine wave inverters.
- Can anyone recommend a brand of inverters?
I don't have any experience with 24V to 230VAC inverters. I've only use 12V to 120VAC.

Someone from a country that uses 230VAC will probably be along shortly...
 

Sensacell

Joined Jun 19, 2012
2,544
It's going to be a battery-sucking monster.

Cooking takes lots of power, the conversion losses make things worse.

Solar/battery supplied electricity is "precious" - cooking with it is going to be painful.
Consider less precious sources of heat.
 

oz93666

Joined Sep 7, 2010
724
That's an extremely large battery !! I would suggest a more balanced system would be to double solar panels and halve battery size.

Modified sine wave inverters are trouble , and will almost certainly cause problems with induction heaters ...

Mains powered induction heaters first turn AC mains back into medium voltage DC .. So it makes more sense to buy a DC powered induction cooker . Are these available?? . If not you could buy the electronics very cheap , redesign the coil and put it under a glass work surface ...
Or get a mains powered cooker and see if you can tap in and make it work on 24V ...

...this induction heater runs on 24V .. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ZVS-Induction-Heating-Board-Module-2500W-Flyback-Driver-Heater-Tesla-Coil-Fan/323545480802?hash=item4b54d03e62:m:mU0xpGrRkJWIThj_6QMritA
 

Thread Starter

DvDriel

Joined Jul 26, 2019
2
Thanks for the useful information. I did not do to much research on induction cooking yet, but what I found is that mains powered cooktops just use the AC power directly to generate the switching magnetic field? So they have no conversion in them at all? Maybe I am wrong, could you please send me the source where you found this information?

If what you say is true I very much like the idea of finding a workaround for the inverter!
 

oz93666

Joined Sep 7, 2010
724
Thanks for the useful information. I did not do to much research on induction cooking yet, but what I found is that mains powered cooktops just use the AC power directly to generate the switching magnetic field? So they have no conversion in them at all? Maybe I am wrong, could you please send me the source where you found this information?

If what you say is true I very much like the idea of finding a workaround for the inverter!
Mains power is 50Hz ... much too low a frequency , ....20 KHz is needed ...

The mains comes in , I assume stepped down and rectified so electronics can turn it into 20KHz ...

I just put "24v dc induction cooker" in google search ... many products available...

 
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