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Ham Radio Tube: Portable Bioenno Solar Panels | Solar all the things!!

Meet Mike K8MRD, the Ham Radio and Solar Enthusiast You Need to Watch on YouTube

An Introduction to Mike K8MRD

Mike K8MRD is more than just a ham radio enthusiast. He's a passionate advocate for embracing the great outdoors through portable amateur radio setups. Taking the exploration of radio frequencies to new heights, Mike's YouTube channel isn't just about tuning into different bands; it's about creating a sustainable and portable lifestyle around it. With an eye for detail, Mike dives into the world of gear reviews, antennas, batteries, and solar energy solutions. If you've ever been curious about running a ham radio station off the grid, then Mike K8MRD's YouTube channel is a treasure trove of information and expert advice.

Summary of Latest Video: Solar Solutions for Field Day 2021


In Mike's recent video, he takes us to Jason's hunting lease in an undisclosed location to talk all things solar. The episode is shot on a sunny Texas day, right before Field Day 2021. As per tradition, Mike is running his station on battery power and goes on to reveal that this year, he's got some shiny new solar panels from Bioenno.

The Solar Gear

Mike introduces four different types of solar panels: a 28-watt, 40-watt, 60-watt, and a 100-watt panel. Throughout the video, he runs tests to measure how each panel performs under the midday Texas sun. All of these panels come with distinct features such as zipper pouches for cordage, daisy chain capabilities, USB plugs, and, for the larger ones, support legs for angling the panel towards the sun.

28-watt and 40-watt Panels

Starting off with the 28-watt panel, Mike shows that it can generate around 1.15 amps, more than enough to power his G90 and still charge the battery. Moving up to the 40-watt panel, he notes an increase in current to about 1.3 amps. Both of these panels are extremely portable, have a Velcro-based unfolding mechanism, and are great for smaller setups.

60-watt and 100-watt Panels

The 60-watt and 100-watt panels are bigger but come with support feet for easier angling. Mike tests the 60-watt panel, which pumps out about 2.3 amps. While he doesn't provide the specific figures for the 100-watt panel, he hints that it could go up to 4 or 5 amps, making it an ideal choice for more substantial power needs.

Final Thoughts

The video is a deep dive into the world of solar power, specifically geared towards ham radio operators. Mike's hands-on tests reveal the performance of each solar panel under real-world conditions, and his commentary is loaded with tips for optimizing the setup.

For anyone interested in portable ham radio operations or simply curious about integrating solar power into their lifestyle, this video is a must-watch.

Video Highlights

  • The convenience of portable solar panels in various sizes
  • How to measure the panels' performance with inline watt meters
  • Modifications you can make, such as switching barrel connectors to power poles
  • Tips for getting the most out of your solar panels by adjusting their angle towards the sun

For a comprehensive understanding of solar solutions for ham radio setups, don't miss out on this video and make sure to subscribe to Mike K8MRD's YouTube channel for more fascinating content.

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