I am sending a small sailing drone on a trans-Atlantic attempt (again).
My first one used a 6V, 2W solar panel, a 4400mAh 3.7vdc lipo battery pack, a smart solar/lipo charger and a booster to get 500mA at 5V to the Arduino.
Everything was fine and this set up has plenty of power and can run for a couple weeks without any sun whatsoever. But… I was wondering if I could make each component totallt redundant so that a failure in any would be overcome. As long as I had one working solar panel, one charger, one battery and one booster, all would be well.
I believe I just need diodes in the right places. In the attached diagram I’ve omitted grounds for clarity and put diodes in front of the solar panels. If I put them elsewhere (essentially any positive coming out of a component) would that be alright?
What about the batteries, which I essentially would gang most of the time? Any implications of connecting lipos in parallel for discharge and recharge?
What kind of diodes? And do they affect the current or voltage? I wouldn’t want the nice 5vdc coming out of the boosters to be sacrificed, nor the solar charge diluted, etc.
Thanks for any and all advice. I did read this post http://forum.arduino.cc/index.php?topic=27325.0.