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I have already bought a 12 V 40 W solar panel. Its controller is also on the way.

I will be using it to charge a lithium ion battery pack of 12 V 13 Ah. The charge controller has options to program it, and I am also using a 40 Ah protection/balance charging board in addition to protect the batteries.

I will be running only two 12 V, 9 W DC LEDs from this solar setup. Only one LED is required to run 1 to 5 hours a day. So I hope the battery pack is enough.

But the confusion came when I planned to add two IP cameras near this solar panel to save outside activity. Both are 5 V cameras.

So I have two options.

  1. Buy separate solar panel (may be 12 V, 10 W) and use a 12-24 V to 5 V buck convertor and use it to charge a 20000 mAh powerbank. And use it to run the cameras (from panel during day and from powerbank during night time). All I need is a new panel, I have every other component in stock.

  2. Instead of buying a new solar panel I can upgrade my current battery pack to 12 V 20 Ah and connect the 12-24 V to 5 V buck convertor directly to the pack and always run the cameras on it. If I connect the buck convertor to the load output of my controller, it will disconnect the load after 24 hours. So I will be drawing power from the battery pack directly. I will need to buy only the extra batteries.

  3. Buy new solar panel, and use it as an additional solar setup with another solar controller. It will be a 12 V setup, I will use buck convertor to run 5 V cameras.

What should I do?

The two light are important. It should work any time. I am worries I apply the option 2, it will drain the battery and LEDs work work when needed.

I know there are better options, if I spend more money, but what is the fun that? We should be able to use components which are in stock with us and use some tricks.

Edit: Each camera seems to be drawing 5V and less than .30A always. May be I can also add a 12V, 2watt Infrared Illuminator Light to support the two cameras at night.

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  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ You haven't mentioned what wattage the cameras use. \$\endgroup\$ – Andy aka May 1 at 12:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hi @Andyaka aka , Each camera seems to be drawing 5V and less than .30A always. \$\endgroup\$ – Shijil May 1 at 16:21
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you now have your panel and controller? How is it going? How many days does it take to charge your battery pack? The "controller", is it an MPPT? What is the "protection/balance charging board" and does its charger have MPPT? What I'm getting at is how do you regulate the PV voltage? \$\endgroup\$ – Misunderstood May 8 at 23:56

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