Power bank to 5v pin

Hi guys

I’m in the process of putting together a remote data logging project and as usual want to power the device for as long as possible on batteries.

I have found the answers to most of my questions via lots of research but the one answer I cannot find is this...

Can I power my arduino using a standard type power bank connected to the 5v pin on my arduino ?

Power banks output a regulated 5v supply right ?

I do it that with an Arduino Pro Mini and five 8x8 LED matrices.
Runs for 12 hours continuous.

Thanks for fast reply ieee488.

I intend to use the mega core board as I have lots of peripherals to run (gps, rtc, sd, rfid, gsm)

If anyone has any tips how I can get this baby to run for months on a power bank I would be greatful.

I intend to put as much to sleep/powered off as possible and just fire up when each part is required.

Months on a power bank? Not going to happen. They run a switching power converter to kick the 3.x v from battery up to 5v, and that has to be on whenever they're supplying 5v, this has significant overhead. The power bank can't power this (nevermind with a load) for months.

If you want to get months off a battery, you need to run arduino directly off battery (and probably run a standalone or modified board, with power hogs like the regulator, power light, etc removed. .

Thanks Doc

Even if I run directly off the battery I’m still going to need a converter on it as there are no 5v batteries out there? I either need to step up or down through one no matter what I do. Just figured a power bank was the easiest choice as it’s a single packaged unit (battery and converter together)

I intend to use the mega core board which I believe contains no regulator, just need to remove the led’s for added savings.

What exactly do you want to log there that you need a mega board?

I would almost go as far as claiming that Arduino is not battery compatible in general. There is way too much stuff like LEDs, USB-to-Serial converter and Co on the board which takes too much power and cannot be put to sleep. The only board that does not have that, or can easily be modified to not have it is the Arduino Pro Mini, but unfortunately, it was apparently designed by drunken baboons, seeing that of all the things, the I2C pins are on the inside, off-grid.

With a powerbank, you also have to work around the auto-off function that will cut the step converter off when the load is too small. This requires either more circuitry, modifying the powerbank or consuming way too much power for running longer than a few days.

Maybe tell us what you want to log and we have a look if you can do it with a normal ATMEGA328P, at 8MHz/3.3V. Most good sensors and sd cards require 3.3V anyway.

Powerbanks are very convenient. But for long term use you do not want to be stepping up the voltage.
There are many articles on minimizing power usage. I am not an expert at that. I hope that others here will be able to help.

Is size a factor for you? Adding more capacity to the battery is the first and easiest solution to duration.
If a battery with X capacity can run your device for Y hours, then if you use a battery with 2X capacity, you can pretty much count on 2Y hours of run time.

Need 20Y hours of run time? Put in 20X capacity in batteries.

I need the mega as need more than 1 serial and don’t want to using softwareserial etc. Plus then 328 chip
Is to small to hold my sketch.

jarnbu:
I need the mega as need more than 1 serial and don’t want to using softwareserial etc. Plus then 328 chip
Is to small to hold my sketch.

I would probably bet money that there is a better solution, but if you don't want to give any details, go ahead. Then your best bet is probably to use 6 eneloops or 2 lipos in series and use an ultra low quiescent current LDO regulator like the HT7350. It would also be interesting what sleep cycles you are looking at to judge how large the quiescent current factor is.

ElCaron:
I would probably bet money that there is a better solution, but if you don’t want to give any details, go ahead.

He did write remote datalogging.

First measure how much current is taken by your machine, multiply it by numbers of hour in the month, then you know what capacity battery is required

ieee488:
I do it that with an Arduino Pro Mini and five 8x8 LED matrices.
Runs for 12 hours continuous.

So he need solar charger or car battery.

Thanks for all the great responses guys.

I am wanting record free range chicken visits to various feed stations out in the countryside. Each station has a remote datalogger positioned next to it with an rfid reading tags attached to the chickens leg.

Each station records the chickens leg tag and records it to the sd card. Every evening the contents of the collected tags are sent via gsm to a server.

Hence why I want extended battery life.

I intend to put the units to sleep all the time and wake them on an interrupt triggered by a read on the rfid.

ieee488:
He did write remote datalogging.

Oh, my bad. Since everybody knows remote datalogging takes exactly 20mA, always, that question was of course unnecessary.

That what I say in # 10.
So he need to multiply 20 mA X 10 sec X numbers of transmission. Reliable capacity of popular 5V bank =2000mAH.

ted:
That what I say in # 10.

My remark was obviously sarcastic. "Remote data logging" does not tell us ANYTHING about power requirements.

ted:
So he need to multiply 20 mA X 10 sec X numbers of transmission. Reliable capacity of popular 5V bank =2000mAH.

10s is totally arbitrary and why too long for a sensible setup. 2000mAh cannot even fill a modern smartphone battery, way more is available.
Most importantly, you forget the quiescent current while the circuit is sleeping, which will be substantial for a power bank, which isn't optimized for that at all (that is why they commonly switch off under low load).

According to the internet, NFC needs a lot of current, which makes sense because if is active RF. It needs to be on all the time to not miss a chicken. If you don't want to change batteries every day, this is not what you want.
Motion detectors can be used with very low power, you could use that to activate the NFC circuit. Test first if if is activated by a chicken. Another option might be something mechanical, e.g. with a reed switch. NFC only has a reach a few centimeters, where are you going to place it to get reliable readings?
For transmission, consider LoRa with RFM95 modules. If the range isn't high enough to reach your place, maybe you can at least reach a grid-powered base station or one with a larger battery (e.g. a car battery with an efficient switching regulator).

I still don't see at all why you would need a mega for this task.

He need something like this.

https://www.google.ca/search?q=bird+tracking+transmitter&rlz=1C1AFAB_enCA475&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjko5ORxvDZAhUDUKwKHY_6CZYQ_AUICigB&biw=1440&bih=787

and this is misleading Mr. chicken info.

jarnbu:
Power banks output a regulated 5v supply right ?

ted:
He need something like this.

https://www.google.ca/search?q=bird+tracking+transmitter&rlz=1C1AFAB_enCA475&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjko5ORxvDZAhUDUKwKHY_6CZYQ_AUICigB&biw=1440&bih=787

To expensive when you have thousands of birds

what information you are collecting ?