Let's Make Robots!

What battery pack to buy



I am making an obstacle avoiding robot which uses Tamiya Twin-Motor Gear Box (http://www.robotshop.ca/tamiya-twin-motor-gearbox.html) which has two FA-130 motors. Maybe I will add lcd, leds, etc. in future. So what battery pack should I buy. There are different types of battery packs available at http://www.pololu.com/catalog/category/54

Which one would serve the purpose, and would be usable for future use. 

And what do I need to connect the output of these batteries to breadboard, to power the circuit. 



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What voltage does your microcontroller need? Most require a steady filtered 5v supply. This is easily done by using a linear regulator circuit, which has been covered on LMR before. Put "linear regulator guide" or something similar into the search box. To get 5v from a linear regulator you will need AT LEAST 5 NiMH batteries for a low dropout regulator, and 6 or more for a normal regulator.

Concerning batteries, the first 2 entries at the top of that page were AA and AAA batteries. Look at the mAh rating. AAA batteries have less than a third of the AA rating. The mAh rating tells you how much current the robot can draw before dying. 2200mAh means approx 2200mA for 1hr use. Easiest to think of it as running time. Unfortunately all the premade battery packs there are AAA or smaller, but if you do want to go with AA`s you can make packs yourself with these.

Robot control, we have a problem.    

The FA-130 motors on the twin gearbox are 3 volt motors. Most micro boards run at 5 volts, so need a 7 volt source through a regulator. Best bet, get a 6 AA pack for use with NiMh rechargables, and some updated 6 volt motors from Pololu to fit in the twin gearbox.