The Qduino Mini is an Arduino-compatible board with a built-in battery charger and fuel gauge.
Recipient of Maker Faire awards, check. Teaching classrooms full of students and engineers, check. Mainstream media coverage, check. Showing off his work to Bill Nye, will.i.am and President Obama himself at the White House, check. It’s safe to say that 14-year-old Maker Quin Etynre already boasts a rather astonishing resume. Yet, it appears that he’s well on his way of adding Kickstarter success to the growing list of accolades in his short yet impressive career.
Recently making its crowdfunding debut, the aptly dubbed Qduino Mini is the first tiny Arduino-compatible board equipped with a built-in battery charger and fuel gauge that can notify a user when a LiPo needs a little extra juice.
“I always struggled to find a way to charge and monitor a battery, bundle with an Arduino and fit inside of every project,” Quin explains. And so, the Qduino Mini was born.
In true Maker fashion, the Qduino Mini is entirely open-source and is based on an ATmega32U4 — the same MCU that can be found at the heart of the Arduino Leonardo. Upon delivery of the board, Quin has revealed that all of its design files, schematics and codes will be made available to the community.
The pint-sized project is not only packed with a battery charger circuit and fuel gauge, but possesses an uber-mini, ultra-thin form factor too. This allows for it to be programmed and have its energy restored simulatenously via USB. Not to mention, the Qduino Mini itself measures just 1″ x 1.5” in size and weighs 0.18oz. Given its lightweight composition, the shrunken down ‘duino is ideal for quadcopters, drones or high-altitude balloon projects, as well as a wide-range of other gadgets like electronic dice, binary clocks and social Androids to name just a few.
Aside from its ATmega32U4, other notable specs include:
- 32KB Flash storage
- 2.5KB SRAM
- 1KB EEPROM
- 3.3V @ 16MHz
- 20 digital I/O (14 dedicated)
- 12 analog Channels (6 dedicated)
- 7 digital I/O also PWM channels
- SPI, I2C, UART available
- LED Indicators for: On, charge status, TX, RX, D13
- TPS78233 3.3V 150mA Regulator
- MCP73832 LiPo battery charger
- MAX17048 LiPo battery fuel gauge
In order to bring the Qduino Mini to life, Quin has partnered with our friends at SparkFun who will serve as the sole manufacturer for the campaign. No stranger to the Kickstarter world, recent SparkFun collaborations have included the highly-popular MicroView as well as MaKey MaKey. If the pattern continues, this all-in-one solution should reach crowdfunding stardom in no time!
Interested? Then hurry over to the Qduino Mini’s official Kickstarter page, where Quin is currently seeking $12,500. If all goes to plan, delivery is expected to begin in August 2015 — just in time for World Maker Faire!