Lipo Rider V1.0

Power your favourite electronic kit with green energy! The Lipo Rider board allows you ride the solar wave to run your favourite 5V device. The Lipo Rider board is the ideal green power solution for your outdoor sensor design. Attach the Lipo Rider board to your sensor board and it can run on solar power forever!

The LipoRider is extremely affordable and easy to use. No programming is required. Plug it in and it works. The internal charger IC handles all the power flow between the various components.

In case solar power is not sufficient, the MiniUSB port allows you to charge your lithium battery through USB. It can also be used to program your kit without detaching the Lipo Rider board.

The Lipo Rider can be purchased as a separate board or as a kit (Lipo Rider + Lithium Battery + Solar Panel) from Seeed Studio.

Model:[ ]


Application Ideas



Block Diagram


Key Specification

Items Min Norm Max
Iin Solar 4.8V 5.0V 6.5V
Icharge (RIset=3.9kΩ) 400mA 500mA 600mA
Isupply 0mA 350mA
Vbatt(Rx=0Ω) 4.2V
Vsource USB 5.0V
Vdestination USB 5.0V

Pin definition and Rating

Pin Instruction and LED Statement

CH pin level(Red LED state) OK pin level(Green LED state) Statements
low level(on) high level(off) Charging
high level(off) low level(last on) Complete
pulse signal(flash) pulse signal(on) The battery isn't exist
high level(off) high level(off)           Two situations :
  •      Input voltage lower than gate voltage
  •      The input voltage lower than battery voltage

Mechanical Dimensions

The outline dimensions are 47mm * 37.5mm * 6.6mm as shown below:


The Lipo Rider works as a power module to supply a stable 5VDC power for MCU projects. Here is an example to drive 300mA output wave for a power supply:

Hardware Setup

Hardware Components

Solar Panel

The solar panel is connectedto the board via the lower JST connector. Please note that the Solar Charger IC only accepts input voltage inside the 4.8-6.5V range. If the charging LED is not on, it is possibly due to:

  1. Lithium Battery Full
  2. Solar Panel voltage outside of range (most likely due to insufficient solar power).

In the second case, re-position your solar panel to accept more sunlight if possible. None of the above conditions will prevent the Lipo Rider from providing a steady 5V supply to the USB, unless the battery is flat.

Solar Panel Equations
Solar Panel Output Power = Output current × Supply Voltage
e.g. 1W = Iout× 5V
Iout = 200mA
Therefore, charging for 1 hour will give 200mAh, ignoring losses. For a 1000mAH battery, charging from empty to full will take approximately 5 hours under ideal conditions.

Lithium Battery

The name Lipo Rider suggest that a Lithium Polymer to be used. However, the chemistry of a lithium polymer and a lithium ion battery is sufficient similar for the two battery types to be interchangeably used. In case more than one battery is to be used, connect them in parallel instead of in series, as the charger IC supplies 4.2V.

Slide switch

The slide switch controls the source of the USB 5V power. ON – Charge enabled from lithium battery and/or solar OFF – Charge disabled from lithium battery and/or solar

Source USB Port

The source USB port is a mini USB port which is used as a normal USB port. The source USB port can be used to charge the lithium battery or connected to destination device via the destination USB port.

Destination USB port

The destination USB port is where the destination device is to be connected. Power to the destination device will be supplied by the Lipo Rider board. The supply will be either from solar panel, lithium battery or source USB port.

Power Flow Dierctions under Different connection scenarios

Due to the huge number of combinations, I have only included only the main scenarios:

Standalone Mode

Solar Power charges lithium battery

USB Mode

Solar Power charges lithium battery. Lithium battery supplies destination USB device

Program Mode

Source USB will charge lithium battery and power destination USB device. Data connection will be enabled between source and destination USB devices


Includes important code snippet. Demo code like :

Demo code


Outdoor Sensor Device Power Supply

One important application of the Lipo Rider board is as an affordable power supply for outdoor sensors. The outdoor sensor device will be powered by the lithium battery supplemented by the solar panel. Please note that it is not recommended to run the outdoor sensor ONLY on solar power, as this may vary during the day and may cause the sensor to reset / power down unexpectedly. In this case, the device is running in “USB Mode”.

If a firmware reprogram for the outdoor sensor device is required, simple connect the mini USB port to your PC which will put the device under “Program Mode” as explained above.

Larger/multiple batteries and/or solar panels can be used, but only with end-user modifications.

Lipo Rider powering an Arduino Duemilanove (not strict an outdoor sensor in this case as I have not connected any sensor and it is not outdoor, but you get the point )

Bill of Materials (BOM) /parts list

All the components used to produce the product.


Please list your question here:


If you have questions or other better design ideas, you can go to our forum or wish to discuss.

Version Tracker

Revision Descriptions Date Editor
Lipo Rider V0.9b Initial public release Nov 2, 2010 Lafier
Lipo Rider V1.2 Revise release Jan 11, 2011 Silas Wan

Bug Tracker

Bug Tracker is the place you can publish any bugs you think you might have found during use. Please write down what you have to say, your answers will help us improve our products.

Additional Idea

The Additional Idea is the place to write your project ideas about this product, or other usages you've found. Or you can write them on Projects page.


How to buy

Click here to buy Lipo Rider ,or other products you like.

See Also

Other related products and resources.


This documentation is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License 3.0 Source code and libraries are licensed under GPL/LGPL, see source code files for details.

External Links

Links to external webpages which provide more application ideas, documents/datasheet or software libraries

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