Raspberry Pi runs with solar power – Part 3
After some theory about the Raspberry Pi and solar power and my calculation about needed solar power and costs, its time to present you my solution. The idea was to get the best performance for a good and cheap price. You may think that it can be cheaper, true, but you should also consider quality. My aim was to run my Raspberry Pi as long as possible without breaks only with solar power. For this I used to following hardware:
For my solar panel, I used EasyAcc solar loading station, which had the best cost-benefit ratio. It is also small and transportable. This solar panel has a USB plug to connect and delivers at direct sunlight enough energy to run my Raspberry Pi. The solar cells are very stable and weather resistant, so it is no problem if it rains. The solar panel can be packed easily.
I’m using this EasyAcc 10000mAh power bank from the same manufacturer as a support battery. For me it was important that this power bank has enough battery charge to run my Pi and it should also be able to charge my smart phone or iPad. 10Ah are enough to run a Raspberry Pi more than a day only with this battery.
This power bank also displays the current state of charge which is important. If your solar panel delivers too less energy to charge this battery, you have to use your home power socket to load it. Otherwise your Pi may stop working during the night. A power adapter is not included, but you can use some micro USB adapter.
I’m happy with my products. I can use the battery for many different things. I can use it with my Raspberry Pi, smart phone or other gadgets. The power bank turns my Raspberry Pi into a portable computer. The solar panel helps me to use my Raspberry Pi without battery in sunlight or to charge my power bank. Now I’m very flexible with my Pi and do not need power sockets all the time.
In summer everything works perfect. There is enough sunlight to run a Raspberry Pi. In winter it is a bit harder, there are only some sunny days and you have to use the power bank.