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Solar Battery Charging


by DoveP on November 28, 2006

Table of Contents
Solar Battery Charging . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Intro: Solar Battery Charging . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 1: The Components Needed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 2: The Solar Panel - attaching wires . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 3: Main Experiment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 4: Charging Your Battery - Part 1A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 5: Charging Your Battery - Part 1B . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 6: Charging Your Battery - Part 1C . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 7: SOLAR BATTERY CHARGING FACTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 8: I want more voltage! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 9: I want more current! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 10: Gotchas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Related Instructables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Intro: Solar Battery Charging


This instructable will show you how to make your own solar battery charger from very simple components. It is taken from my documentation provided with a kit I supply you should easily be able to source the same components yourself of course.
If you have any comments on how to improve the documentation then please do not hesitate to say :)
http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Electronic-Widgets-Inc

Step 1: The Components Needed


The items shown in the image are contained in your kit. This page explains their uses. Your kit may have a smaller/larger copper stripboard than this and may contain
extra wire - I try to beef up the kit as time goes on.
The Copper Stripboard contains rows of copper tracks. Each track is electrically separate from its neighbour. It contains holes for your components. The boards I supply
are larger than needed, this will allow you to expand the system at some future date.
The Batter Holder ... errrr holds your batteries.... and comes with two pins, one for the positive and one for the negative ends, they will be soldered into the stripboard.
100 Ohm resister - at one point this was needful in the kit as the LED couldn't cope with some of the voltages in the experiments - however the new LEDs do and the
resistor is simply in there because it is advertised as such! Maybe you will have need of it when you expand the system.
LED - this is a high intensity light emitting diode. 3.2-3.6V forward voltage, with 10000mcd at 20ma. A LED must be placed in the circuit the correct way around. The
longer leg should receive current from the positive terminal/direction.
1N5817 DIODE - this diode allows current to flow in only one direction - this prevents battery power discharging through the solar panel at night. It drops about 0.2V from
the system. This blocking diode also needs placing in the circuit in the correct orientation. The diode has a circular band across its barrel at one end of the diode. This
should be closest to the negative/ground.
Wires - Usually I include at least 4 wires - a black and red wire for the solar panel, a brown wire as a jumper and another wire for use in unsoldered testing.
Solar Panel - This image shows the back of the solar panel. On your solar panel in the centre of the left side and the right side you will see a small panel of smooth metal
- this is the negative/positive terminals. I have marked the positive side by adding black dots on that side. This solar panel will output a max of 3V at 150ma.
Warning - I suggest you read the whole document before making any experiments - information is contained throughout the document which will improve your
understanding of charging batteries using solar power.
HINT - you should probably purchase a multimeter and learn how to use it - this will tell you important information on typical voltages and currents you solar panel will
produce in varying weather situations.
Soldering
It is quite possible to use this kit without having to do any soldering at all - however at some point you will need to so I include both soldered and non soldered options.
http://www.kpsec.freeuk.com/solder.htm is a good site explaining soldering.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Step 2: The Solar Panel - attaching wires


Attaching the black and red wires to the solar panel
To attach the wire one can use the soldered or the non-soldered method. Soldered is the best way to go and I show you pictures of both - if you plan on using more
panels or using the single panel a lot you will find it best to mount the panel onto a piece of sheet wood or plastic. This will keep the wire in place and prevent strain on
the contacts + wires.
You can see an example of the solderless method.... Yes that is cellotape! The red squares indicate where the contacts are. The wire ends were stripped and then
flattened onto the contacts and firmly taped in place. I don't suggest using glue! - you wont get the wire staying in touch with the contacts as the glue gets in the way.
Allow some tape to move round to the solar side to ensure a firm placement.
Also shown is the soldered method. Not the most fantastic job in the world but it is held securely. Always make sure the contact points are clean and free from grease.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Step 3: Main Experiment


Place a full charged 1.2V rechargeable Nimh battery into the battery holder - I assume you know the right way round to insert it. The 1.2V battery on its own will not be
enough to light the LED. The 2-3V solar panel will also have a lot of trouble lighting the LED by itself. We can attempt to use the voltage of the battery PLUS the voltage
of the solar panel to operate the LED. Below is the solderless version.
Connect the RED POSITIVE terminal of the solar panel to the NEGATIVE leg of the battery holder. Use the extra wire supplied to connect the POSITIVE end of the
battery holder to the longer of the two legs of the LED. The longer leg of an LED is always connected to the positive side of the circuit. Then connect the NEGATIVE wire
of the solar panel to the other LED leg. If the battery is fully charged and you have a sunny day the LED should light up. You can even power the solar panel from a
powerful torch or lamp by shining it onto the panel. Try experimenting by attempting to light the LED with the battery alone, or with the solar panel alone.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Step 4: Charging Your Battery - Part 1A


And now we come to making your own battery charger. Below is the circuit diagram for it.
The solar cells positive terminal is connected through the diode to the positive terminal of the 1.2V battery. If the voltage of the solar cell drops below 1.4 volts then with
the 0.2V the blocking diode takes there wont be enough potential to charge the 1.2V battery. The purpose of the diode is to disallow current dissipating out from the
battery to the solar cell when this low voltage situation occurs in the solar cell.

Step 5: Charging Your Battery - Part 1B


The next photo shows the front of the completed and soldered circuit.
The red lines at the bottom show how the copper tracks are aligned on the other side of the board. The blue lines show how the circuit completes through its electrical
common points ( i.e. the tracks ). See how the small silver band at the top of the diode is toward the positive terminal of the battery. It allows flow towards the battery but
not from it.
It is of course possible to do away with the brown wire and connect the black/negative wire the same track as the negative end of the battery. We simply wanted to show
a more 'closed' circuit form.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Step 6: Charging Your Battery - Part 1C


From below you can see the soldered connections and how they run along the copper tracks. I have added in the brown wire as a brown line and the diode as a blue line,
I have also added in the positive and negative makers for the battery. Remember the position is flipped from the previous photo.

Step 7: SOLAR BATTERY CHARGING FACTS


The maximum output of the solar cell is 150ma. This is with the best conditions. A high capacity rechargeable Nimh can hold 2000mAH. This means that it would take (
2000/150 ) hrs to fully charge it. This is about 13hrs!
When choosing solar cell arrangements one needs to work out
a) How many batteries do you want to charge at once
b) How fast do you want them to charge.
By adding extra solar panels one can charge more batteries, charge batteries faster or even both at the same time.
So how does this work?

Step 8: I want more voltage!


In order to double the voltage you need to join two solar panels in series. i.e. you need to connect the negative terminal of one solar panel to a positive terminal of the
other solar panel. This will then leave you with a positive terminal from one panel and a negative terminal from the other to connect your wires to. In this case you would
then have a solar panel rated at a maximum of 6V at 150ma ( the maximum voltage of a single panel is 3V ). More voltage would allow you to charge more batteries at
one time - just remember that although 3V is the maximum rating of the solar panel you need to get an idea of the typical output for your climate. The batteries would also
need to be connected in series ( negative to positive like in most multi-battery devices ). The circuit diagram shows below the solar cells in series and their accumulative
voltage

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Step 9: I want more current!


More current would allow you to charge your batteries faster. To double the current output you need to connect the solar panels in parallel. Connect the positive terminal
of one panel to the positive terminal of the other panel and also connect the negative of one to the negative of the other. This will give you a max rating of 3V at 300ma.
The circuit diagram below shows the solar cells connected in parallel. You can see that the voltage is the same at 3V but now the current will be doubled.

Step 10: Gotchas


Just a few gotchas to help you avoid any errors or misconceptions.
1) Get a multimeter and get a good feel for how your solar panel operates in various weather conditions and at various times of the day. Maximum ratings are all well and
good but we don't all live in sunny Florida.
2) Be careful about how much current you pass through your battery. Most modern batteries can be charged at quite a high current. For example you could charge a
2000mAH battery with a 500mA current for just over 4hrs and it would be fully charged - keep on charging it beyond that 4hrs and you could seriously damage the battery
( or even cause an explosion). Nimh batteries have a protective mechanism when they get overcharged and attempt to dissipate the excess current as heat. However
they can usually only managed to discharge one tenth of their total current as heat. What this means in practical terms is that if you charge a 2000mAH battery with
200mA then it will survive without a problem if you overcharge it for a while. However if you are charging it with a 500mA current and then overcharge it things get more
serious.
I will attempt to expand this tutorial further - if you have any suggestions, additions, corrections then please contact me at peterd@soleyphotos.com
To purchase this kit or any extra solar panels please go to
http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Electronic-Widgets-Inc

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

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Comments
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paul.mendes.9 says:

Feb 22, 2015. 10:48 AM REPLY


Why is the positive lead of the solar panel connected through the diode to the positive lead of the battery? This type of design will lower the potential energy
rather than increase.

lfehrmann says:

Feb 3, 2015. 4:14 PM REPLY


Hi there. great instuctable I already learned alot! now Im a girl haha but love to mess with junk. i set up the i sides of an old car charger input(12/24v) output 5v. I
soldered a usb female to use for cellphone charge. I then put 10x1.2vAA in series to get the charger alive (101.2=12v) and It works! now my question is...i want
to use it with solar for long bikerides. that is connect solarpanel to get juice for gps, phone, music ALL DAY riding. So can I charge ALL 10 in one go? they are
now soldered in series. I get that the VOLTAGE should be around the packs size (12v) BUT WHAT ABOUT THE AMP?? My batteries are 380mah/a piece so in
total (in series) 3800 what should i do? a 10th of 380mah not to overcharge or 1/10th of 3800mah?! or should i put individual wires from each battery to the
panel (like a funnel) to make power go directely to each battery. sorry if i sound stupid but i cant work out HOW to do it-or if it is even possible to charge 10 AA's
in series. thanks ANY HELP IS APPRECIATED!! Regards Lisbeth

akashsood4 says:

Jan 15, 2015. 9:30 PM REPLY

what will be total cost...can anyone tel me?

yusuf.ali.520900 says:

Sep 5, 2014. 9:11 AM REPLY


sir i have 3 watt ,12 v solar panel , i want to make recharble light through this panel, please help me to decide the value of light and battery

yusuf.ali.520900 says:

Sep 5, 2014. 9:11 AM REPLY


sir i have 3 watt ,12 v solar panel , i want to make recharble light through this panel, please help me to decide the value of light and battery

KosherAnt says:

Aug 16, 2014. 11:32 AM REPLY

can you do or share a link to one with a battery charger indicator and two USB ports as well

jimmysymo says:

Jun 25, 2014. 11:51 AM REPLY


I have been using Solar panel 3.5 volt 400mA to recharge 2 ,1.5volt batteries and run up to 3 leds in my instuctable (Bronze steampunk solar light) I used an old
solar garden light (broken) and used the circuit inside instead of a diode.Now I bought 5 new diodes and didn't know where to put it .today I found your (instuct"
and was very impressed with your explaining and now understand much more.
(SEE even at the age of 70+one can learn more .thanks Zvi..(JIMMY)

Keohohina says:

Aug 22, 2011. 12:38 PM REPLY


Thanks this has really helped, Im trying tho get a pair of solar panels which are the same size as yours to power a water pump and charge a battery at the
same time. Any suggestions

DerDok says:

Jun 17, 2014. 11:34 PM REPLY

Hi
Keohohina, did you ever get a answer to your post?
I'm trying to build one
that powers a fan for a dehydrator and also charges the Ni-cad batteries
for it and I'm running into snags. I'd like it all to be real simple, something I can build cheap, maybe with the stuff in my junk pile, but also have
overcharge protection and an indecator that its charged. Looked all over the internet, cant seem to find what I want. How did you fare?

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

sjs2 says:

May 6, 2014. 11:09 AM REPLY

Hai
i want to make solar charger to charge two batteries simultaneously of the spec
Voltage
: 14.8V
Capacity : 5400
mAh
how many solar cells would be required , the circuitry and the weight of the total set including the solar pannels
thanks

miguipda says:

Apr 9, 2014. 3:22 AM REPLY

Hi,
some basic questions :
1) how to calculate the resister and diode value in regard of the Watts (solar panel). It means when we buy a 10W or a 30W or 60W how could we know
(calculate) the best resister and diode to also buy ?
2) how to calculate the good battery to buy following the panel we choosed ? By example if we buy 4 panels of 3 watts that we will put in serie (or in parallel)
how could we be sure to buy the best battery ?
Sincerely thanks ;-)

Pizzaenfeu says:

Apr 8, 2014. 6:48 PM REPLY

Could I have another link to buy a little kit as shown? Or better that's not too expensive? The shop linked up is deleted :/

chuckiechan says:

Dec 27, 2012. 11:50 AM REPLY


I'm using three dollar store yard light panels and I was wondering if a Zener diode would work. I have one in my junk box. 20V, Pd 1W. Will this fly?
I'm building an AA and AAA battery charger.

KBS Visual Media says:

Jun 4, 2012. 6:14 PM REPLY

How can i use 4V 100ma Solar panel in the above manner?

jemor143 says:

Aug 16, 2011. 1:23 PM REPLY

Can the 1N5817 diode be use with a 6v solar panel (130mah) to charge 4 AA?

Goodhart says:

Feb 18, 2012. 7:27 AM REPLY


According to this Data Sheet, it appears to be a viable, if not over-kill type use. Is there any specific reason for using a Schottky Barrier Rectifier diode?

krishnan111 says:

Feb 17, 2012. 4:15 AM REPLY

we can charge all types of battery?? ni-cd ,ni-pb or li-on batterirs??

Goodhart says:

Feb 18, 2012. 7:20 AM REPLY


No, if the battery doesn't have "rechargeable" on the outside (excluding the OLD style carbon rod batteries), then they are not rechargeable and will leak
or explode of put in a charger for any length of time.

Callum Snowden says:

Oct 15, 2011. 9:33 AM REPLY


An improvement: add a LED with no resistor in series with the positive line on the solar panel to the battery holder. It will serve as a current limiter and a
basic display as to how the battery is charging
eg. Brightly lit = charging battery a lot
Not so bright = charging more gently
dim = trickle charge
Also *USE A RED OR YELLOW LED FOR CHARGING SMALL BATTERIES OFF A SMALL PANEL*
Just my ten cents :)
Uber

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

TechKid67 says:

Aug 4, 2011. 3:44 PM REPLY


Hi, I am new to solar energy and am trying to create an emergency power light kit. In my prototype I want a solar panel to charge somewhere around 10
LEDs. First off: Is this possible if they are aligned in parallel? Second: Is it possible to over charge the batteries and if so (which would probably have a
horrific outcome) how can I prevent that? Third: How might I go about getting the solar panel to charge a large re-chargeable battery which then charges the
smaller batteries. I want to do this so the suitcase doesn't need to be left in the sun in order to charge the batteries. If you can't help me with any of this its
alright but thank you for any information you can provide. If some of this didn't make sense please send me an e-mail and I'll try and make it more
understandable
Ryanclark@verizon.net

kylengineer says:

Mar 1, 2011. 3:17 AM REPLY


i found this very helpful.thanks but i ddnt gt to see the complete circuit with all the components listed from the start,i only saw piece by piece.i would like to
see the whole complete circuit.

lionheartone says:

Nov 19, 2010. 5:25 AM REPLY

Hi
I am making solar panel jacket. In order to charge phones and i-phones etc
I need some help with circuit. do not know what cicuit to use.
Please help

rcisneros says:

Sep 1, 2010. 9:53 AM REPLY


Question. What happens if the solar cells aren't the same? Or one solar cell goes into shade before the other? So you could end up with a cell pumping out
let's say 2v @ 20mA and the other 5v @ 100mA. Would they just add up to a 120mA output ? Wouldn't the flow change direction and head into the 2v 20mA
cell?

rcisneros says:

Sep 1, 2010. 9:49 AM REPLY


Question. What happens if the solar cells aren't the same? Or one solar cell goes into shade before the other? So you could end up with a cell pumping out
let's say 1v @ 20mA and the other 3v @ 100mA. Would they still just add up to a 4v output ? or You could have a cell pumping out let's say 1v @ 100mA
and the other 3v @ 20mA. Would they still just add up to a 4v output?

mdelzo says:

Jun 24, 2010. 12:49 PM REPLY

what happens if i get a solar panel of 4V and I have 4 AA batteries in series. would it charge?or go the opposite way? tks :)

ebendersun says:

Aug 31, 2010. 5:25 AM REPLY


No, you need a higher voltage panel to charge 4 AA's in series. Here at Sundancesolar.com we recommend at least 6V to charge 4 batteries.

rtyu says:

Jun 3, 2010. 7:09 AM REPLY

thank you
pure energy

popa27272 says:

May 8, 2010. 11:17 PM REPLY


i was playing around with my solar powered radio once and noticed that i got less static and the battery charged better when i focused a magnifying lens
over it to the point where the solar panel appears at its largest,
just a simple way to increase efficiency of the panel

kroq-gar78 says:

May 3, 2010. 7:44 PM REPLY

what is the voltage & current required for the solar cell?

mrziggy5000 says:

Jul 3, 2008. 1:02 AM REPLY

Does any one know how many battries i could charge with a solar panel 1.5V at 500mA

ShmemilyWoodey says:

Jul 13, 2008. 9:31 PM REPLY


If you are trying to charge a 1.25 volt battery (which is the typical voltage of a rechargeable battery in size AAA, AA, C, or D), then you can charge ONE
battery with a solar panel that has 1.5V at 500mA. Be very careful when you charge your battery because 500mA is 5 amps, and that is a lot of amperage
for a 1.25 volt battery. You are in serious danger of overcharging and making your battery leak or explode. Some of the fast chargers in the stores charge at
a very fast rate (800mA), but if you decide to charge your battery using the 500mA straight from your solar panel you will have to monitor your battery very
carefully and check it at least each hour to make sure it isn't over charging.If you want to make it slower and easier, you will need to add a resistor to take
the amperage down to a decent level of about 100-200mA. There are websites you can use to calculate what resistor you need. Try googling "ohms law
calculator" or "resistance calculator." Good luck!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Easymac79 says:

Feb 12, 2009. 3:01 PM REPLY


500 milliamps is point 5 (.5) amps. one amp is 1000 milliamps. just like 1000 mililiters is one liter. 500 mA is still a lot, and may overheat the battery,
but it is not as dangerous as you put in your comment. just dont stick it to your tounge, 60 miliamps is enough to kill you (stop your heart) but i have
been electricuted with 15 amp ac line like 3 times, and i cant even count how many more than 60 miliamp dc lines! and obvously im alive, so i think
the point of death is more like 20 amps.

ggarnier says:

Apr 25, 2010. 9:40 AM REPLY

Can you reconcile "60 miliamps is enough to kill you" with "i think the point of death is more like 20 amps"?

DieCastoms says:

Jul 17, 2008. 11:21 PM REPLY


Your statement is partially incorrect. 500mA is not 5 amps, it is 1/2 amp. mA stands for milliamps. Milli stands for thousand (even though you would
expect it to stand for million). 5,000mA is 5 amps. I know nothing else about charging batteries, but I hope this helps! :) I need to find a way to reliably
and safely charge a 7.2volt 40mAh (yes, forty, not four hundred, it's a small pack) Ni-MH battery pack without supervision. Any suggestions? DC

ShmemilyWoodey says:

Jul 18, 2008. 8:50 AM REPLY

Oh. and BTW....


If you charge your battery at a higher amperage, you won't be in danger of making the battery explode unless you overcharge it. You will get a good
solid charge no matter how many amps you put into it. The disadvantage to using higher Amps is that you won't get the "trickle charge" effect that
makes the battery very full to the brim. So, if you go above the 40mA, it won't hurt your battery. I purchased some solar panels at
www.sundancesolar.com that charge at a rate of 50mA. You can see my tutorial with all of the links you need to buy the stuff here.here. I haven't
posted it on instructables yet....I just wired 3 panels in series so I have a total voltage higher than the combined voltage of the battery packs. Sadly, I
don't think there is a way to charge any Ni-Mh battery pack without some supervision. The slower you go the less likely you are to overcharge
because you can check it more often. Good luck!

ShmemilyWoodey says:

Jul 18, 2008. 9:00 AM REPLY


Oh yah...and thanks for correcting my math...i always forget to add or subtract the zeros....and when I say it won't hurt your battery to go over its
rated 40mA, I don't mean flood it with over 4000mA all at once. :) You should safely be able to charge it with 100-200mA, or more...depending on
how thorough and deep you want the charge to absorb into your battery. Recharging with higher mA will result in a more shallow charge (that is if
N-Mh batteries respond like lead acid batteries to recharging). I hope this is making sense. Let me put it this way. Lower charge rates result in
fuller batteries with a strong charge. High charge rates give your battery a burst of energy that will charge the battery but not to its full capacity.
Thats why charge controllers are needed when trying to charge a lead acid battery to its peak efficiency. It varies the rate of current to
compensate for the charge rates needed to completely fill the battery to full. Again, this is all based on the assumption that Ni-Mh batteries
behave like lead acid batteries when recharging.

DieCastoms says:

Sep 8, 2008. 12:35 AM REPLY


So I could safely connect a 12v7aH battery to a 10 amp "automatic" car battery charger and leave it overnight? How about the same 12v
10a charge on a 12v38aH battery? And what the heck does it mean if a battery says something like 7aH/20Hrs??

ElectricMan1 says:

Mar 28, 2009. 8:49 PM REPLY

NO! You will damage it! Charge it with about 1 amp so it gets a nice trickle charge.

ShmemilyWoodey says:

Sep 8, 2008. 8:21 AM REPLY


As far as I can tell you are asking if its okay to connect a 12volt battery to an automatic car battery charger? I think it will be fine because
as far as i know the "automatic" car battery chargers will do an auto shut down when the battery is full. I haven't used one, so you better
make sure that it has the auto shut down mode before you leave it overnight. I think a 12V battery is fully charged when its voltage is at
13.2 volts, so in theory your automatic battery charger should be able to detect when that voltage has been reached and then stop
charging the battery.
7aH means that you can use the 12 V battery for 7 hours at 1 amp current rate or at 7amps for 1 hour. A 38aH battery means you can
use the battery at 1 amp current rate for 38 hours or 38 amps for one hour.
If you increase or decrease the current to more or less than one amp, then the battery life will change accordingly. Pulling less current
than 1amp per hour will make your battery power last longer so it will get more than the rated 7 hours or 38 hours of life.

geeklord says:

Sep 7, 2008. 7:39 AM REPLY

does that happen to be a rc(helicopter/plane?) battery?

DieCastoms says:

Sep 8, 2008. 12:33 AM REPLY

No, it's actually a laptop Cmos battery pack.

geeklord says:
K, I know that a lot RC battery packs(including mine) are 7.2v

http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/

Sep 10, 2008. 5:10 PM REPLY

tomohern says:

Mar 7, 2009. 4:58 PM REPLY

Wrong... 500mA = .5A and 500dA = 5A. m = three decimal places, d = two decimal places

DualPhase says:

Feb 20, 2009. 7:20 PM REPLY


It might be different if you put the batteries in parallel, then you could put as many as you want on the circuit. Of course that would up your current a
lot though.

reilic says:

Aug 23, 2008. 4:52 AM REPLY

is it possible to charge a cellphone or a mp3/mp4? please kindly answer

Easymac79 says:

Feb 12, 2009. 3:04 PM REPLY


Yes, just take the usb adapter that came with it, or find one in an electronics store that matches, and lop off the computer end and stip it down.
take the red and black wires, (keep them) cut off the rest. strip them down. these things are tiny, and only have a few like 40awg wires, so be
careful, i recomend using your teeth, but dont hurt yourself. attach the red to the positive, and the black to the negative, and you are ready to go. I
might post an instructable on this.

NInja99 says:

Jan 24, 2009. 6:12 PM REPLY

You can but im not sure how you make it you should explore instructables.com to make it.

ShmemilyWoodey says:

Aug 23, 2008. 9:03 AM REPLY


Yes. You can charge a cell phone or mp3 player. Sometimes you can even run it directly off the solar panels. Since you've got to make sure the
voltage is correct, It would be wise to install some way to control the voltage getting to your device so you don't damage the battery or device
permanently. You can use a resistor, capacitor, and voltage control chip, or a combination of the three, to make sure the voltage doesn't spike and
damage anything.
There is a project online called the Minty Boost that shows how to build a 5 volt charge device with 2 AA batteries. Here is the link.Here is the link. I
would start here (the kit costs less than buying the components on your own and paying for shipping). She does a good job explaining what parts you
need to regulate the voltage and current getting to your device.
I also found a chip that will let you control how much voltage is getting to your device. It is the MAX639. You can get free samples shipped to you if
you register at the MAXIM website. Here is a placeHere is a place where you can get a schematic to build a solar powered NiCad battery charger
using the MAX639 chip.

ElectricMan1 says:

Mar 30, 2009. 4:46 PM REPLY


My suggestion is that you should not use that panel, because you can't use 1 or the 500mA will damage it and you can't use 2 because it is insufficient
voltage.

carlose says:

Aug 28, 2009. 10:13 AM REPLY


What if you use both connections, parallel and then in series? would that improve charging times? or charge more batteries? or both? or none in the worst
case escenario

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http://www.instructables.com/id/Solar-Battery-Charging/