How about a teeny tiny power supply??

I've seen some pretty good power supply projects on here. Here's a challenge: Make a 5 to 12 volt power supply that can fit into a 1 cubic inch space, of any dimensions, i.e. 1"x 1" x 1" or 1/2" x 2" x 1", etc, including any enclosure. It must put out at least 300ma sustained and must have a fairly smooth voltage regulation for use with other electronics (of course). It must have clear schematics without the use of special programs to view, i.e. it shouldn't be in an eagle format or rather can be viewed with paint, or any of the other picture viewers. It must be powered from the mains and NOT use a microcontroller or any custom chips. The smaller it is, the better, and less than 1 cubic inch is excellent. I've seen real genius on here. Is this genius ready to try this?

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Pazzerz (author) 8 years ago
Well, I took the advice of Westfw and bought a couple of suppies he mentioned in one of his posts. I bought the 9v supply (2). They aren't quite as small as I would like, and the spec sheet talks of added caps (I'm assuming they are mostly optional), but they can be fit into a configuration that will work. Thanks very much. On another note, a switching supply is something I'm unfamiliar with (well, at least the makeup of it), and a diagram/explanation/schematic would be helpful if anyone has the time. Basically, if it can be built with off the shelf components and commercially available in the size that I just purchased, then miniaturization is the only step I need to consider and hack together.
kelseymh9 years ago
How about 8 pA at 50 mV from a single wire?

It doesn't quite meet your specs, though:
  • Each wire is 4 µm diameter × 200 µm long (~2500 µm3)
  • One cubic inch is 15,625×109 µm3
  • You could (in principle :-) pack 6.25 billion of these little generators in there.
  • In series, that would only provide 50 mA.
Pazzerz (author)  kelseymh9 years ago
Since you're thinking piezo... What do you suppose using a crystal oscillator can do, and how would you put it to work to make power for you? Its another path to look into.
Big Bwana9 years ago
Would you be willing to go with a "online regulator" ?? one which is transformer less ?? and keep in mind while these work and they are small, the actual potential difference between a earth ground and your 5 volt line is 120 Vac but the 5 volt line positive and negative is 5 VDC ... So care would need to be taken to ensure that no one is exposed to potentially lethal voltages ...
Pazzerz (author)  Big Bwana9 years ago
It will be housed inside a plastic case anyway, so exposure to voltage isn't a problem. A small enough layout can also be encased in resin so long as the heat dissipation isn't a problem.
I accept your challenge!
Pazzerz (author)  gimmelotsarobots9 years ago
Go for it! Mind you, now, there is (as I recently found) commercially available power supplies in a 4 pin PCB package that do this. BUT, if you can MAKE one and document it, then everyone benefits, not just me.
Padlock9 years ago
Hey, Apple did it. There's got to be a way.
Padlock Padlock9 years ago
Woah. That was weird. I didn't even attach anything
Padlock Padlock9 years ago
ahh! it did it again!!!
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