Let's Make Robots!

Help with a charging circut...

Hey guys,

I have been playing with a LM386 amplifer chip. It's a great little simple chip and takes very little power. I soldered together a little stereo amp and added some crappy little speakers for an iPod speaker system that I can use in the kitchen while I cook. Here's the deal, I was wanting to run it off of solar PV cells as there is a perfect window just above the sink. I am guessing that I would be charging between 4 and 6 AA's for it's little battery pack.

So here's the question:

Does anyone have any link or ideas of a very simple, low-power solar charging circut I could solder up? I can calculate amp/hrs and watt/hrs and the like, but I don't know much about over-charge protection or diodes (which seem to be important) or anything like that.

--You folks got any ideas?

Much thanks, much love

Chris the Carpenter

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Kudos to blondietheblonde over at instructables.com - http://www.instructables.com/id/Rain-or-Shine-Solar-Charger/

"The charge controller is the heart of the system, and unfortunately is the only part that isn't an off-the-shelf product, so we're going to have to make one. Its not something that can be made from standard Radio Shack parts, because it runs at very low voltage and needs good precision. If you�re not feeling up to the task of making one after reading this section of the instructions, don�t despair. I made a few extra and have them in my etsy shop blondietheblond.etsy.com"

 

Seriously,

Thank you so much for that link and datasheet. I have been looking it over and it seems to be more than I would ever need and I like that. I've got solar robots and solar iPod chargers and solar battery chargers dancing through my head! 

www.rocketbrandcustom.com baby!!

Once you get your charger working, would you consider making life easy for the rest of us by doing a walkthrough?
 :-)

Most welcome, glad I could help. Have you ordered a catalog from Mouser or Didikey? If not, they're a great resource for IC's and electronic paraphernalia of all types.

 Also, see if you can get your hands on a paper NTE catalog - if not, you can download the elctronic version off their site.

 http://www.nteinc.com/

 

Chris, have a look at a BQ2054 IC

 

here's the datasheet..

 

http://focus.ti.com/lit/ds/symlink/bq2054.pdf

 

I don't know the answer but I'm watching this topic, because I've been wanting to do the same. I hope you'll post information about your project here once you figure it out.

Dan