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Topic: 6V power OK? 12V? (Read 524 times) previous topic - next topic

gerstle

May 25, 2013, 12:12 am Last Edit: May 25, 2013, 12:15 am by gerstle Reason: 1
Hey everyone!

I'm building out a large, 4-legged stilt costume that's got an arduino Duemilanove at it's core, 400+ RGB LEDs providing the light, and a bunch of sensors directing the show. I'm trying to figure out the best way to power the whole thing and I ran into someone else recently that's running ~350 of the same lights off a 6V 10Ah sealed lead acid battery and getting about 5-6 hours of run time. That sounds good enough to me. If I last 4 hours walking around on this thing I'll be amazed :)

So, I know that the specs on the Duemilanove say optimal 7-12V with limits of 6V and 20V. It's easy to find good, sealed lead-acid batteries in 6V and 12V, but not a lot in between. The 12V is *way* heavier than the 6V version w/ the same amp hours. Weight is a big concern for me since I've gotta carry this thing on my back and 3' off of the ground.

Question is... Should I be concerned about running this whole thing off of 6V (thinking 12Ah)?

My guess is that it will run great until the voltage drops a fair amount below 6V and then things might get a little wonky, but nothing will be damaged. If that's the case, I think I'm fine with it. Assuming it's 3-4 hours before things get wonky, but I can test that ahead of time.

Cheers!

casey.

PS - Saw @Massimo at the makers faire in San Mateo last week... the new arduino stuff looks pretty fun!

PaulS

The Arduino should be powered by a different power supply from whatever your stilt costume is powered by. 4 AA batteries in series will provide enough voltage and current to power the Arduino for hours, and will weigh next to nothing.

gerstle

Good call Paul!

I hadn't thought about that, but it makes perfect sense. Guess this is what you get when a software guy is designing hardware  :D

PaulS

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Guess this is what you get when a software guy is designing hardware

I'm a software guy, too. But, at least I know enough to separate powering the Arduino from powering the costume.

gerstle

Could have done with that last bit, but I appreciate your input regardless

PaulS

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Could have done with that last bit, but I appreciate your input regardless

Didn't mean to upset you. I was just thinking that software development begins with understanding the scope of the program. Hardware design is the same. The scope of the costume (power supply, what is controlled, what provides feedback, etc.) is not the same as the scope of the costume controller.

gerstle

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Didn't mean to upset you. I was just thinking that software development begins with understanding the scope of the program. Hardware design is the same. The scope of the costume (power supply, what is controlled, what provides feedback, etc.) is not the same as the scope of the costume controller.


OK... fair enough. Thanks for clarifying. I'm definitely doing this project without having it fully baked and it is largely still in the prototype/discovery phase. Only parts are planned out and documented on paper at this point. I'm working towards making it more complete and designed correctly.

Have a good weekend.

CrossRoads

Make sure to connect the different  battery grounds so everything is referenced to the same levels.
Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years.  Screw Shield for Mega/Due/Uno,  Bobuino with ATMega1284P, & other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  my website.

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