Victron DC to DC Orion Chargers. Isolated or Non Isolated ? Which is right ?

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Victron DC to DC Orion Chargers. Isolated or Non Isolated ? Which is right ?

Victron Energy Orion-Tr Smart DC-DC Chargers

The Victron Orion-Tr Smart DC-DC chargers are DC to DC adaptive 3-stage battery chargers. The “smart” units have a Bluetooth connection for faster and easier set up directly from a mobile phone.

They are useful in dual battery projects and especially in vehicles and boats where the alternator and the starter batter are charging the service battery while the vehicle is moving.  The Orion chargers are programmed via Bluetooth. They are control via remote on/off switch since there is an engine running detection mechanism.

Remote on/off
The remote on/off eliminates the need for a high current switch in the input wiring. The remote on/off can be operated with a low power switch or by for example the engine run/stop switch.

The Orion Tr-Smart chargers are compatible in 12V and 24V systems. They are used in system with mixed up voltage where the service battery is 24V and the starter battery 12V, they also charge lithium and AGM batteries. Models are available up to 400W and unlimited multiple units can be connected in parallel to increase output power. They are suitable for high temperatures up to 55°C with a full rated output up to 40°C.

The big question. Isolated or Non Isolated ?

The non-isolated DC-DC converter there is a common ground connection (negative) between the two voltages


In short, an isolated power converter isolates the input from the output by electrically and physically separating the circuit into two sections preventing direct current flow between input and output, typically achieved by using a transformer. Isolated DC-DC converters are also useful for breaking up ground loops, thus separating parts of a circuit that are sensitive to noise from the sources of that noise (Figure 1). Another feature of an isolated DC-DC converter is a floating output.

The choice between isolated and non-isolated converters depends on many factors. Some applications require isolation for safety reasons, and others may benefit from a floating output by breaking up ground loops or shifting of reference voltages. However, where isolation is not required, a non-isolated converter may provide a decrease in cost, size, and/or an increase in efficiency.


How to differentiate Isolated from Non Isolated chargers

Note the Isolated version has individual negative connections for the input and output, whereas the non-isolated version input
and output share a common negative.

Advantages of Non Isolated Chargers

  • Cost Savings
  • Smaller size
  • Higher efficiency

Advantages of Isolated Chargers

  • Safety compliance
  • Breaking of ground loops
  • Floating output and level shifting

Typical installation diagram – Non Isolated Converter

Typical installation diagram – Isolated Converter

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Victron dc to dc converters and chargers – Data Sheet & Installation Instructions

Data sheet Victron DC to DC Chargers

Designer and developer of solar photovoltaic systems from 1kW to Megawatt range. Steve worked for Alstom and General Electric for 11 years. He develops solar inverter and complete systems with energy storage that are affordable, easy to install, and have a quick return on investment.

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