Powering PyTrack+Wipy with Solar Panel + Lipo

  • Re: What are the specification for a battery for pytrack + Solar Panel ?

    Good Day all,
    I've very new to PyCom IoT (posting for first time here) and also very new bee in electronics... Therefore i prefer to ask before doing mistake.
    => i'm using a Pytrack + Wipy 3.0 to record GPS trace in a plane (which i'm presenting after into kml format under Google Earth or similar). To date, i'm powering the Wipy with a powerbank connected to the usb and all is working fine.
    My intention is now to provide more autonomy to the system with adding a Lipo Battery that i would like to charge with a Sun power panel.
    => the Pytrack comes with the Lipo Battery plug. I've read from the quoted thread that a 3.7v with JST connector will make the job.
    The question : will it be possible to connect the Sun Power panel directly into the USB so that it can charge directly the Lipo Battery therefore creating a "non uninterruptible power supply"
    From what i've read, most of the Sun Power panel are delivering 6V DC with different power capacities. however, the USB socket is expected to receive 5V.
    Do i need to add "something" in between ?
    Thanks for your kind help.
    Any advice // product reference & numbers are more than welcome.
    Hopefully, the thread is in the right forum place. Apologies if a similar solution has been shared already (i did not found it).

  • Have you tried solar panel ? I mean how much batteries are required to store the solar energy and what about backup.

  • @pevrard from what I understand it’s not viable as the voltage may be above or below the thresholds for USB (unless your panel comes with some sort of regulator of course, but then you will have lots of compounded losses). You will probably need to add another circuit if you want to squeeze as much power as you can from the solar panel.

    You may want to look into this: https://www.adafruit.com/product/390

    Never tried it myself.

  • @jcaron : thanks for the warning, i'll be very carefull on that polarity matter... if i go through :-).
    I've read several elements in the forum, however, the solution is finally not very clear in the end (several discussions on power capacity - 1200 mAh seems to be a reasonable capacity), but still unclear if i can connect or not the solar panel directly in place of the USB ???
    If anyone could provide schema for a newbee :-). More than helpfull and will close the topic on for all.

  • @pevrard I’ll let others chime in on the solar panel aspect (though there have been discussions a while ago on this forum on that topic), but I just wanted to warn you on the LiPo batteries: not all batteries with a JST-PH-2 connector have the same polarity! Especially all those geared towards drones and other RC devices usually have the opposite polarity from that required by the Pycom boards.

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