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Topic: Walkway Solar Panel LED posts (Read 708 times) previous topic - next topic

encryptor

Dec 03, 2012, 04:28 pm Last Edit: Dec 03, 2012, 05:07 pm by encryptor Reason: 1
I was on my usually walk at night when I saw a LED shining dimly thru a plastic dome.  I picked it up and it was the top of a walkway solar panel LED that someone had kicked off its post.  I didn't see any other walkway LED posts by the sidewalk and yard, so I kept this one!  Ground Score!  I dismantled it and uncovered a rechargeable AA battery, a cheap LED, a photocell resistor, a PCB with software to turn on LED when dark + charge battery when light, and best of all...a solar panel with red & black wires!  What are some ingenious methods for using this solar panel?  Is there an Arduino sketch out there to charge a Li-Ion battery from a solar panel cell?  :)

Lets say I had many of these cheap and small solar panels, then I would want to wire them up in parallel to boost the voltage it can provide.  Is that correct?  When do I know to wire power supplies up in serial or parallel.  Thanks! :D
peace*&^

jolphil

Hi
In general, you would wire in series to increase the voltage and in parallel to increase the current much like batteries.
jolphil

MarkT

Don't expect that much power from a small solar cell like this, so yes series and parallel arrays would be required for powering
anything more than an LED or two.

The lowest power Arduino is probably the lilypad or the Pro Mini 3.3V 8MHz boards, so they might be a
good starting point for solar powered experiments.  I think they take only about 5mA at 3.3V so may
not even need full sun.
[ I won't respond to messages, use the forum please ]

encryptor

why do you include the word "arrays"?  What is meant by that.
peace*&^

MarkT

Array as in array of individual panels - a grid with panels in series and parallel as required.
[ I won't respond to messages, use the forum please ]

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