Sunday, December 18, 2011

Ready to start the game

Months of work are close to give the expected results. Beta-tests will finally start in January 2012 so I'll still have some weeks to finish software tools, documentation and templates. I admit being a bit impatient for getting practical feedback from testers, each one with different expectations, skills and application fields. By the way, sorry for those still wanting to join the beta-test program but, unfortunately, the list is closed. Thanks to everyone for your support and ideas or simply for following this humble blog.

Figure 1: Battery-powered sensor board

The above is a battery-operated board, ready to connect to different ambient sensors like the TMP36 temperature sensor or a DHT11/DHT22 dual temperature-humidity sensor. This board is powered from a single AA battery and the boost regulation is accomplished by a MAX1724. I must say that I hoped to hook this board to a solar cell but results have not been as good as expected. MAX1724 is not very well suited for this kind of application. My next attempt will use the BQ25504 from Texas Instruments, and some solar cells specially designed for indoor applications. I'm pretty sure that this will be a winner combination

Figure 2: Sensor board and panStick

I'm receiving a lot of e-mails asking about a date for the commercial release. Well, it's maybe a bit soon for giving a precise date although May 2012 is what I've always had in mind. Meanwhile, I'll be updating this blog with the latest news regarding this project, including the progresses done during the beta-tests.


  1. Regarding BQ25504, I think you will find this reading ( interesting.

  2. Thanks Juanfe, you're right, this is an interesting reading. Another thing that I've learned is that standard solar cells as the ones used in the article behave very inefficiently in indoor applications.

  3. If your desire is to use them outdoors, why not buy solar garden lamps?
    You'll get a solar cell and rechargeable battery for a price that is lower than buying them separately.

    For indoors application you could better just recharge the battery from time to time. If you could switch to a 18650 lithium you'll get a lot more than an AA can provide for not much more space.
    Swap the regulator for a similar step down device, regulating the voltage down to 3V ?

  4. By the way, sorry for those still wanting to join the beta-test program but, unfortunately, the list is closed.speech recognition software