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I'd like to make a voltage doubler, I've read up on wikipedia and also here. My issue is that I have DC input and I need DC output, first is this even possible, second, if so the problem I'm having, is that I think I'm in over my head. I don't really understand the diagrams or how to read them (what the symbols mean etc).

My experience with electronics is quite limited, suffice it to say I've put a capacitor over an electric motor to evan out the power on an RC car and used variable resisters to control the speed of a motor. And much of this was cargo-culted from forum posts where individuals made some suggestions and I tried them till something worked.

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For small currents (tens of ma), you can use a charge pump, which use ceramic or electrolytic capacitors to store energy. You can build your own, or use an IC like the Maxim MAX1682. Many more Maxim charge pumps are listed in this article.

For larger currents (up to a couple amps), you need an inductive DC-DC boost converter, such as the Maxim 17067. Lots more here. Most are not limited to just voltage doubling.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ This looks great, I'm running off a single Double A battery and a very small motor, so the amperage is quite low. \$\endgroup\$ – Nate Apr 21 '11 at 18:03
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If you've got a PWM source (a µC or 555 timer), you can roll your own boost converter with a MOSFET or transistor and an inductor (plus a few other discretes you've probably already got lying around). http://www.ladyada.net/library/diyboostcalc.html I'm planning on using this arrangement for boosting 3.3v to 40v to drive an antique analog volt meter that doesn't have an external resistor. The duty cycle and frequency of the PWM source control the final voltage. This probably wouldn't be sufficient for a motor with any kind of variable load, as the output voltage is dependent on the load, but I think it's kind of cool and hope it'll work for my purposes. :-)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Wow, that DYI boost converter is pretty cool. \$\endgroup\$ – drxzcl Apr 21 '11 at 21:03

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