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Description: If you need to charge LiPo batteries, this simple charger will do just that. It is designed to charge single-cell Li-Ion or Li-Polymer batteries. Check the datasheet below to see if it will work with your battery.
The board incorporates a charging circuit, status LED, connector for your battery (JST-type used in the batteries we carry), and a mini-USB connector. However, we do not recommend this charger with a 110mAh battery.
Note: This version uses a mini-USB cable. We also have this charger with a micro-USB connection as well.
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The device doesn’t have load sharing, meaning that it’s not designed to be used in an embedded system, i.e., charging the battery while also powering the battery-powered circuit. If your load circuit consumes too much current (not tested, but guessing on the order of a milliamp), the charge may never “finish”. The data sheet shows a simple circuit modification to allow this. The device works as designed, just keep that in mind.
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small, expensive and works
The default charge rate for the LiPo Charger Basic is set to 500mA. The default output from a standard USB port is 500mA. In general, if you are charging your LiPo at a fast rate past the charge current specs of the battery, the life of the battery will go down. Looking at the charge rate for the battery, it looks like the recommended charge rate is 1C (or 400mA). I recommend changing the resistor that is on board to reduce charge rate. You can add some resistors in series between the PROG pin and resistor labeled 202 (this would require cutting a trace) or replacing the surface mount resistor with a higher resistance value. You can calculate the resistor value with the equation that is presented in section 5.1.2 Current Regulation Set (PROG) of the datasheet http://dlnmh9ip6v2uc.cloudfront.net/datasheets/Components/General%20IC/33244_SPCN.pdf.
If you look at the datasheet for the LiPoly USB Charger’s IC controller, the LED is connected to the charge status output (STAT). This is an output to indicate the charge status which is explained in section 5.2.1 in table 5-1:
Shutdown: Hi-Z (High-impdedence mode) No battery present: Hi-Z Preconditioning: L (Low) Constant-Current Fast Charge: L Constant Voltage: L Charge Complete – Standby: H (High)
Since the cathode (-) of the LED is connected to the controller, setting the pin low turns the LED on; setting the pin high (or putting it in high-impedence mode) turns the LED off. From the datasheet, this unit features “AutomaticPower-Down.“ So when the battery is fully charged, the LED should turn off and the charge IC controller should turn off. This can fluctuate back and forth with charging depending on if there is some small discharge with the LiPo battery.