abroun
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:13 am
Contact: Website

Efficiently run your Pi from batteries using a UBEC

Thu Aug 14, 2014 5:45 pm

We now sell 3A UBECs, for running the Raspberry Pi off batteries, in our store.

UBECs (Universal Battery Elimination Circuits) are efficient switching voltage regulators that convert a high battery voltage into a regulated voltage suitable for running electronics. UBECs are often used in remote control cars and planes.

There are already many posts in this forum about running a Pi using a UBEC. The advantage of using the one that we supply is that we supply it with a micro USB connector which means that it's really easy to connect it to your Pi. To use other UBECs without this connector you'd have to plug it into the power pins on the GPIO header which can fry your Pi if you get it the wrong way round.

Features of the UBEC are
  • Output: 5V/3A and 6V/3A switchable
  • Ripple: <50mVp-p(@2A/12V)
  • Input: 5.5V to 26V
  • Size: 51mm x 16.6mm x 8.5mm
  • Weight: 11.5g
  • 2.54mm female connectors on input lines
  • MicroUSB connector for Pi on output lines

We've also upgraded the Raspberry Pi Robot kit we sell to include this UBEC, greatly improving the battery life of the robot.

Image

toxibunny
Posts: 1382
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:21 pm

Re: Efficiently run your Pi from batteries using a UBEC

Thu Aug 14, 2014 8:51 pm

Handy for making a phone charger, too, I guess.

hey, if I had one of these, would it make a mcguyvered 'cordless drill post-apocalypse phone charger' safer to use with expensive smartphones? I always liked the idea, but it also always seemed a bit risky...

Also, does this really extend the battery life when paired with a pi? I thought it was the pi's own inefficient linear 5v-3.3v regulator that was the problem before, which is why they changed it for the B+...
note: I may or may not know what I'm talking about...

abroun
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:13 am
Contact: Website

Re: Efficiently run your Pi from batteries using a UBEC

Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:08 am

Hi there,

I hadn't thought of it before (as I'm not that imaginative) but yes, this UBEC is also a handy way of charging your phone off batteries (see the photo of my phone charging below). No worries about connecting the batteries the wrong way round either as the UBEC has reverse polarity protection.

Image

Can't really comment on the safety or otherwise of a 'cordless drill post-apocalypse phone charger', the UBEC will take up to 26V as an input though, which I would imagine should cover the battery pack of most cordless drills. How exactly were you planning to construct the charger? Do you have any photos? I imagine that the advertising campaign for a 'cordless drill post-apocalypse phone charger' would be fun. :)

With regards to my comments about the UBEC extending battery life, this was only with respect to our raspberry pi robot kit, (sorry for the bold, don't want to mislead anybody), that's because before, the robot kit was powering the Pi off a linear voltage regulator on a Dagu Arduino Mini Driver board, and hence humping out a good chunk of the battery power as heat.

Regards

Alan

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