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You could even have two sets of AAs in parallel and boost that capacity to 4000 - 6000 ma.An added bonus from rechargeable AAs is that you can take them out of the Solar Charger, charge them up or replace them, and be on your way.The central brain of our project is a DC to USB converter circuit. Some of them don't work with Apple stuff, so be careful or buy several.This takes our AA power and changes it into the 5Vs we need for charging USB. 1) You can make one yourself using Lady Ada's Minty Boost kit. It also charges almost every gadget under the sun, including new Apple Products. Whatever you do, don't try and make a 6V or 9V circuit and then use a voltage limiter to take it back down to 5V. You can do it, and it works, but there are far better options.I've been reading a bunch of blogs this fine Earth Day morning and have noticed that most of them are posting little write ups about green solar powered USB gadget chargers. I don't think I've seen any for less than , and I've not seen one that really suits my style.
Instructables has quite a few guides on how to make Solar USB Chargers, including the very well done guide on how to combine a Lady Ada Minty Boost circuit with a solar lithium ion battery. I've done an updated version called Solar USB Kit 2.0 and a more rugged version called Lithium Heavy Duty 2.0.
If we use two rechargeable AAs that put out a total of 2.4Vs we're going to need a solar panel that is at least 3 - 4Vs just to meet basic levels of charging.
The higher the voltage of our solar cell (or cells) the less light we need to charge up our batteries.
I remove them because they're useless and a waste of power. Anyways, if you've bought a cheap charger to use you have to take it out of it's plastic, and disconnect any random wires or battery packs. If you want to be super green you should use some super capacitors for this project.
This is why I'm cutting them off in the pictures below. What you should be mindful of is where power connects to your board. You need figure this out on your own depending on your situation. Enjoy the fact that you're being very green and clean. They last forever, are super green, but are also quite expensive. I've done an updated version called Solar USB Kit 2.0 and a more rugged version called Lithium Heavy Duty 2.0.
You could easily connect two of those in a series to get your 4Vs.