Sunny Buddy Solar Charger V13 Hookup Guide
The Sunny Buddy is a small maximum power point tracking solar charger for single-cell LiPo batteries.
This tutorial will help you understand what the Sunny Buddy is, why it’s useful, and how to use it.
What You’ll Need
The Sunny Buddy can’t do anything without a supporting cast. Pair the Sunny Buddy with these buddies to make it work:
- Solar Panel – Most panels should work, just make sure they produce an output voltage between 6-20V. Our large and huge panels will work; our small panels will work if you connect two of them in series (see the “Hooking It Up” page for details). Panels with a center-positive barrel jack (like those) will be able to plug directly into the Sunny Buddy.
- LiPo Battery (single cell) – The Sunny Buddy is intended to charge a single Polymer Lithium Ion cell. LiPo’s come in all shapes and sizes, we recommend you use one with a capacity greater than 450mAh (e.g. 850mAh, 1000mAh, or 2000mAh). Batteries like those, with a JST termination, will plug directly into the Sunny Buddy. The 450mAh size suggestion is due to the charge rate of the Sunny Buddy–most LiPo cells don’t like being charged faster than their equivalent capacity.
- A Load – Your battery has to power something, right? Your load can be anything from an LED to an Arduino-powered robot.
Here are some other tutorials you may find useful before delving into this hookup guide:
- Batteries – Check out the battery tutorial for some help understanding why the Sunny Buddy works only with LiPo batteries.
- Electricity Basics – It may be useful to review how current and voltage combine to transmit power to a load.
- How to Power Your Project – Solar power and batteries are just one of many ways to power your project. Make sure to consider all possibilities!