Next Step Deep-Cycle Alternator Regulator

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A Fast Full Charge

A fast full charge is the name of the game, and the Next Step Regulator makes it a reality through the use of the latest microcomputer technology. With all of its features the Next Step is the choice for most systems.

Most Cost Effective

The Next Step is the most cost effective of any performance regulator offered on the market. Bulk, absorption, and float charges are done automatically. Absorption time is adjustable as are the absorption/float voltages.

Smart Overload Detection

What if the regulator is in float, and the alternator can't keep up with demand? The Next Step is smart enough to sense this condition and go into the absorption state so that a full charge will be returned when the load demand lessens and the alternator can once again continue charging.

Charge State Indicator

An LED keeps the user informed about the progress of charging. The green LED flashes on/off codes indicating the charge step at the moment. It even tells you when the alternator has brought the battery voltage up to the absorption setpoint, and it is permissible to adjust the setpoint.

Error Indicator

A red LED only flashes when faults are detected, such as loss of sense input, or overvoltage on the battery. Other faults such as shorted field driver or shorted field are reported. Errors are identified by the duration of on and off times for the red LED. This mechanism permits rapid troubleshooting of the charging system.

Adjustment

The Next Step is very easy to adjust. Both absorption voltage and time can be set. Float voltage is automatically calculated from the absorption setpoint. As mentioned, the green LED indicates when the regulator can be properly adjusted. No more guessing!

To make absorption time easy to adjust, a test point is provided that indicates the time setpoint. Just measure the test point with a meter, and convert the voltage to time using an easy conversion factor. This exclusive Ample Power feature means that the Next Step can be installed and adjusted without waiting for the unit to trip to float. This will save you an hour or two of labor charges if you have the unit professionally installed!

Improved Performance

The Next Step improves on earlier design performance with these important additions:

Parallel Solenoid Signal

The NEXT has also been designed to provide a new level of system integration. The unit drives a parallel solenoid to simplify charging a starter battery at the same time a house battery is charged.

With the parallel solenoid driver, the Next Step is ideal for motorhomes and fifth-wheel homes. The loads which are normally drawn from the starter battery can stay connected as wired ...the standard solenoid will supply 85 Amps continously, (400 A intermittent). The same parallel solenoid can even be used with a manual parallel switch to connect the house and starter batteries.

Temperature Sensing

To provide an ideal charge regimen, the NEXT senses battery temperature and compensates the various setpoints. Temperature compensation corrects the output voltages from $ -4 $ to $ 140^\circ $ Fahrenheit ($ -20 $ to $ 60^\circ $ C). Above $ 140^\circ $F, the regulator cuts off completely to prevent thermal runaway. The NEXT continues to operate below $ -4^\circ $ F, but does not continue to increase battery voltage. At the cold limit, battery voltage is raised as much as 1.5 Volts over the $ 77^\circ $ F value, that is 15.9 Volts for absorption of a 12-Volt battery. At the hot extreme, voltage is reduced by about one Volt, that is absorption of a 12-Volt battery is only 13.5.

Absorption Hold

The NEXT interfaces to the Energy Monitor II and will stay in the absorption voltage until the Monitor releases it to float. The interface can also be used with a switch to hold the regulator in the absorption state, or force it into the float state.

Halogen Lamp Protection

While batteries need a voltage higher than 13.8 to charge fully, the higher voltage will take its toll on halogen lights, reducing their life considerably. The NEXT includes an input that locks the setpoint to 13.8 Volts when desired. This naturally slows the charge process but the locking feature can be used when long hours of motoring at night are expected. On motorhomes, the lock input can be connected to the headlights so that the regulator is locked out of high voltages whenever the headlights are on.

Dual Alternator Rated

The Next Step Regulator is rated to drive the fields of two alternators in parallel. No additional circuitry is required if both alternators are mounted on the same engine. When the alternators are mounted on separate engines, a Dual Alternator Controller, DAC, is available which permits either or both engines to be run without applying field power to an alternator that isn't rotating.

Features at a Glance

Dimensions and Mounting

The Next Step Regulator is 4.25 inches, (108 mm) long by 6 inches, (155.5 mm) wide. It stands 1.75 inches, (44.5 mm) off its mounting surface. It can be mounted in any orientation. The housing is marine grade aluminum which has been blue anodized.

Ordering Information

Next Step, 12-Volt, P-type #NEXT-12P
Next Step, 24-Volt, P-type #NEXT-24P
Next Step, 32-Volt, N-type #NEXT-32N
Parallel Solenoid, 12-Volt, 100A #SOL12-100
Parallel Solenoid, 12-Volt, 200A #SOL12-200
Parallel Solenoid, 24-Volt, 100A #SOL24-100
Parallel Solenoid, 24-Volt, 200A #SOL24-200
Dual Alternator Controller, 12 Volt #DAC-12
Dual Alternator Controller, 24 Volt #DAC-24

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Ample Power products are manufactured by Ample Technology, 2442 NW Market St., #43, Seattle, WA 98107 - USA

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