Solar lamp with reused lithium cells

Tutorial de avatarLow-tech Lab | Categories : Energy

This tutorial allows you to make a solar lamp equipped with a USB charger. It uses lithium cells that are reused from a old or damaged laptop. This system, with a day of sunlight, can fully charge a smartphone and have 4 hours of light. This technology have been documented during a stopover of the " Nomade des Mers " expedition on the island of Luzong in the northern part of Philippines. The association Liter of Light has already installed this system since 6 years in remote villages which don't have access to electricity. They also organize training for the villagers in order to teach them how to fix the solar lamp ( already 500 000 lamps installed).

License : Attribution (CC BY)

Video overview

Materials

  • Used laptop battery
  • Solar panel 5V-6V / 1-3W
  • Charge and discharge regulator (ex: 4-8V 1A Mini Li-ion USB Arduino Battery Charger TP4056)
  • DC/DC tension converter DC/DC booster MT3608 (electrical component that will transform the 3.7 V of the batteries into 5 V)
  • Switch (to open the circuit and cut off the light)
  • Electric tape
  • Box

Tools

Cells extraction

  • Gloves (to avoid cutting with the plastic of the computer battery or with the nickel ribbons that connect the cells)
  • Hammer
  • Chisel
  • Cutting pliers

For the lamp fabrication :

  • Glue gun (and glue sticks)
  • Heating gun or small torch
  • Wood saw
  • Screw driver

Step 1 - How it works




Step 2 - Manufacturing stages

Step 3 - Removing the cells from the computer battery



Step 4 - Measure voltage of cells and ther capacity


Step 5 - Realisation of the 3 different modules




Step 6 - Connection of the 3 modules




Step 7 - Building the case - Version 1


Step 8 - Building the case - Version 2

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