1. Mauro Scomparin
  2. solarPower

Overview

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solarPower
==========

Current version: 
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1.0 - 25/04/2012 - Prototype


Author: 
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Mauro Scomparin <scompo@gmail.com>


Specifications:
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- Solar panel specs:

	Output voltage: 9V
	Output current: 110mA (full sun)
	Total power: 1W (full sun)

- Battery pack specs:

	Output voltage: 7,2V (fully charged 7,6V)
	Rated current: 2300mAH

- Output specs:

	Output voltage: 5V (solar panel + battery)
	Max output current: 700mA (should work, but the DC/DC converter gets pretty hot from 500mA)
	Measured output: 5,2V (no load), 4,9V (500mA load solar panel working), 4,7V(500mA no sun)

Description: 
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solarPower uses the power coming from solar panels to charge batteries 
and use them with a DC/DC switching converter (MC34063).

The solar panels I had laying around at home (see specs) have not enough power to directly charge 
something with 500mA so the batteries are used as an "energy storage" device with the side effect
that it can be used also during the night or when there's no sun available for a limited time.

The hardware it's designed in the free EDA gEDA.
The calculation for the DC/DC converter MC34063 are done throug the 
online calculator "http://www.nomad.ee/micros/mc34063a/" and after verifing it, I can say 
it's pretty spot-on.

The project can be improved in many ways, it's just a prototype right now, infact there's still 
no control on battery overcharging, no output motitoring and more.. But I'm working on it!


Licenses:
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See LICENSE.TXT file.


A big thank you to:
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- David L. Jones (http://www.eevblog.com/) for the great tutorial on MC34063 and 
  all his other eevblog videos, great stuff! Check them out!!

- Mast (http://www.nomad.ee/) for the online calculator for MC34063.

- Ladyada (http://www.adafruit.com/ - http://www.ladyada.net) for her work
  on wierd apple devices charging methods and all her stuff! Check her out!!


Version history:
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1.0 - 25/04/2012 - Prototype