Smart power jack for USB Power DeliveryDesigned by Clara Hobbs in United States of America
Sorry y'all, I started feeling ill this weekend, so as part of my quarantine I'm closing my shop for the time being.
What is it? PD Buddy Sink is a smart power jack for USB Power Delivery. Configure it with the voltage and current your project needs, then plug it into any USB PD power supply with a high enough po...Read More…
PD Buddy Sink is a smart power jack for USB Power Delivery. Configure it with the voltage and current your project needs, then plug it into any USB PD power supply with a high enough power capability. It negotiates with the power supply and turns on its output, giving your project up to 3 A at 5, 9, or 15 V, and up to 5 A at 20 V. With the latest firmware release, the Sink can also make requests from USB PD programmable power supplies, providing any voltage from up to 4–21 V at 20 mV increments.
PD Buddy Sink is simple to configure. Just plug it into a computer while holding the Setup button, and connect to the USB CDC console interface. Alternatively, use the (still experimental) configuration GUI. The configuration interface works with Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows 10.
All units ship with the latest stable firmware (1.2.2), supporting Power Delivery negotiations while in Setup mode. To use this feature with an external power supply, I recommend adding a PD Buddy Wye to your order. The latest release also supports making requests from USB PD programmable power supplies (PPS), which offer voltages at 20 mV increments from a wide range (up to 3–21 V is offered, but the Sink can't run far below 4 V).
Note: Power supply, USB Type-C cable, voltmeter, and breadboarded example circuit not included.
One day I was digging through a box of wall warts, trying to find one that would work for my latest project. I needed one with 12–16 V output at no less than 0.5 A, and with a reasonable output connector. Untangling cords and checking labels was taking a while, and I started thinking. “If I could use USB Power Delivery, I wouldn't ever have to do this again.” Since USB PD power supplies can provide a multitude of voltages at sizable currents over a USB-C cable, all you'd need is a little circuit board that takes the place of a power jack and tells the power supply what your project needs. I searched the web, and to my surprise, no such device was available! I realized I'd have to make it myself.
To the best of my knowledge, PD Buddy Sink is the first complete device that allows any hacker, maker, tinkerer, or electronics hobbyist to easily power their projects from USB Power Delivery.
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Simon | March 24, 2020
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Ken | Aug. 24, 2019
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