DC Microgrid

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DC Microgrid

Release status: experimental [box doku]

Description self-sustainable power grid
Author(s)  Severin, Uli

We wanted to build a DC microgrid at CCCamp19, but never fully got around to it. So we'll keep on trying in our lab, for the next camp and other events.

Gear we have built so far

Hacks and other related information


Our gear at CCCamp19
  • Forty Eight Grid
  • Team Forty Eight

List of recommended devices

Power Out Boxes

48V-> 24/12/5V

  • DC sockets
  • Car sockets
  • USB
  • Switches + Fuses
    • What kind of fuse?
  • Volt/Amp Measurment - "Battery computer" -> Stats via LoRaWAN?

USB Charging Station

I have two 48V->5V DCDC converters (Product page, datasheet), which we could used tu build USB charging stations for powerbanks etc.

  • USB "power sensing" via data pins: [2], [3], [4]

Power In Boxes

12/24V -> 48V

  • Schottky Diode
  • Fuse / Currentlimiting
  • Batterymonitor / Datalogging -> LoRaWAN?
  • Auto-Disable with Under/Overvoltage

Battery Computers

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32990834620.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32864994942.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32993234025.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32616324201.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32957814319.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32904528079.html https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32784107301.html


  • SELV [5] [6] [7]
  • Speakon
  • XT60
  • XLR-4
  • Car lighter plugs
  • DC barrel plugs


Biolite "MicroGrid"

Biolite has a "base station" with a battery and connected lights to it (Core77 blog post). We could build a similar station and connect other stuff to it.

  • Connection between lights via some common cable we all have - RJ45? passive PoE? To remain compatible with a bunch of other gear out there...
  • GoalZero also has similar lights for their PowerPacks, like this one

Grid Connection Units

Nanogrid with different connection units

Units with µCs controlling direction, depending on the voltage in the local nanogrid and the microgrid.

  • Can be direct (w/o DC-DC-Converters) or with voltage adjustment
  • One-to-one connection via 230V?

Severin started working on this for the "Design for a Cause" 2021 contest over at Element14:

Related Projects


DC microgrid project at SHA2017, 42V grid voltage



"Independent Solar Energy Mesh System" - Solar power solution for community mesh networks, e.g. Freifunk



Further Reading