Your Questions About Solar Panel Calculator

Charles asks…

How can I power a small lightbulb with a calculator solar panel?

I am making an energy efficient doghouse model for science class and it needs to stay warm in the winter so I want to use a calculator solar panel to light a small lightbulb (for a nightlight, but I can use LEDs if I must) but I don't know how.

ssadmin answers:

The panel will have 2 connections and the LED will have 2 wires. If things are color coded connect like colors together. If not, connect each LED wire to a panel connection and test it. If it does not work then disconnect and reconnect to the opposite connections.

Mary asks…

How many VDC roughly are in a calculator solar panel?

I'm building a small solar powered robot, and the motor runs from 1VDC to 9VDC. Will that small solar panel in a calculator do that?

ssadmin answers:

The calculator cell will not produce enough voltage or amperage. If you go to radioshack they sell a $15 kit that has a solar cell in it capable of running your robot. They may also sell other solar cell (check your store).

Michael asks…

what can i do with a calculator solar panel?

i have a calculator with a solar panel what could i power with it? like could i hook it up to a psp even though it will take forever to charge? and how would i do this?

ssadmin answers:

It wouldnt be worth your time really to try and hook it to a psp. You would have to build a circuit to match the voltage of the solar panel with the voltage of the psp.

One of the few things i can think of would be a model windmill that used a very small solar panel to turn a very small motor attached to the rotor on the windmill.

If you want a solar panel to charge your psp, look on ebay, theres plenty of cheap low wattage solar panels that with a small solar panel regulator can put out enough 12v dc energy to possibly charge your psp

Ken asks…

How many volts does a basic calculator solar panel produce?

Im working on making a solar iPod charger and need to know how many calculators to dismantle to make five volts for the USB charger.

ssadmin answers:

My guess would be 2-3 volts. Use a voltmeter, measure it.


Maria asks…

How many volts does a small solar panel on a calculator produce?

I'm curious to know if the small solar panels on a calculator (ie TI-32) could produce a voltage similar to what is used in a single-use (disposable) camera, approximately 4V.

ssadmin answers:

It isn't Volts that matter if you're trying to put the calculator solar panel on the camera. It would be the amps.
The calculator's solar panel will put out however many volts or very close to what the battery puts out.
If you want you can test it out with a Volt/Ammeter.
You see, those cameras use 2 double A batteries. They are going to put out a higher current than the small dime shaped battery in the back of your calculator; a higher voltage perhaps too.
Those disposable cameras have a photo flash capacitor in them that has to charge. You can hear them charge up when you tell it to turn on the camera's flash. Sounds like a winding then the little orange light comes on. That light means the capacitor is charged.
You SHOULDN'T be able to change out the batteries in the camera with a solar panel from a calculator without having to wait days for that flash capacitor to charge.

HOWEVER, you can take multiple solar panels and wire them in a parallel circuit to get more current(amperes) or wire them in a series circuit to get a higher voltage. If you were to do this you could power whatever you wanted with them. Even your house if you were to get a rectifier to convert the power from DC to AC.

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