Learn How To Make a Solar USB Charger

If you need a way to charge your gadgets and smartphone and you’re not particularly fond of also having to charge a battery, let the sun do the work for you. In this post, we’ll teach you how to simply make your own Solar USB charger.

Although this is not a novice project, it’s not complicated to build a solar charger. You only need the right materials and are ready to go. For the most part, the process consists only of assembling things in the right order. If you’re looking for a fun, useful, and relatively inexpensive project to tackle, this is the one to check out.

Why should you make a Solar USB charger?

The reasons to build and use a solar charger are numerous. First of all, when you travel and go camping, you don’t need to worry about the battery of your devices: you can simply use the sun to charge the battery at anytime and wherever you are.

Second, we don’t have to remind you that this will be totally free, do we? Apart from the costs of the materials, you don’t have to pay anything to charge your smartphone. Moreover, if you add a USB power bank, you can save energy and use it during nighttime. It acts as a battery reservoir, and charges during the day. So, are you ready to build your Solar USB charger?

Guide to build your solar charger

Materials of Solar USB charger:

  1. 1 voltage regulator 5 V model 7805;
  2. 1 electrolytic capacitor 100 UF/50V;
  3. 1 polyester 1UF capacitor/ 63V;
  4. 1 ohmresistor 150 and ¼W;
  5. 1 green LED;
  6. 1 female USB connector;
  7. 1 key to turn on and off the set;
  8. 1 wire to board connector;
  9. 1 default for mounting the circuit board;
  10. 1 solar panel of at least 6V;
  11. A box/recipient to accommodate your project.
  12. We also have to use soldering equipment, peelers, stylus and a drill. To paste the panel and the plate in the case, it’s needed hot glue.

But where can you find all this equipment and material?

The materials can be found at any electronics store or even on the Internet, including the solar panel. The panel should provide up to 6 volts and 400 mAh. If you want to increase the electric current, you can connect more panels in parallel as long as it does not exceed 1 ampere or 25 volts, which is the entry limit of the voltage regulator.

Just keep in mind that higher the input voltage, higher the temperature of the regulator will be. By connecting them in parallel, you keep the original resistance of each and increase the current, which will cause the battery to be recharged faster.

Building the circuit of Solar USB charger

The construction of this project is relatively simple. However, take care when soldering materials on board. Before fusing the pieces on the board, position the components and plan the connections. That way it will be easy to assemble everything else. The materials should be ordered like this:

solar-usb-charger

Where you put them on the board does not matter as long as you make the connections correctly. This is only a suggestion. However, the LED and USB connector must be always positioned on the card’s edge. Use copper wire and connect the poles of each component, adjusting them on the board.

Putting the board inside the box

The box/recipient, you choose should have a size compatible with the solar panel. To learn how to fit the board inside, we suggest that you mark with a pen the location of the LED holes, Key and USB.

After this part, drill the holes, fit the plate and paste it with hot glue so that it is securely fastened in place. The solar panel will be the last piece of construction. To hold it, put one more hole in the back of the box, run wires and connect them to the board. Remember to pay attention to the polarity to avoid damage to the circuit.

To complete, paste the solar panel on the top of the box. This solar charger will charge at a much slower pace than a normal electric charger. To maximize efficiency, it is ideal to turn off the smartphone during the charging period. Then the system will not consume power while the battery is being charged and it will charge faster.

The E-Book START SAVING MONEY ON WATER AND ELECTRICITY TODAY is designed to give you the initial orientation you need to think about solar solutions. We showcase different solar technologies and applications. You will be amazed at how much solar can do for you. Download now HERE.

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Gayrajan Kohli
Gayrajan Kohli
Gayrajan is a staunch solar promoter, serial entrepreneur & management consultant. He has a decade of experience in solar PV, disruptive technologies and political consultancy in USA and India. He believes that development of solar and other renewable technologies is critical to India's energy security. Gayrajan holds a Masters and a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from USA. Follow him on Twitter to gain daily industry insights.
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