RC Model Airplanes/Cars/Boats/Solar Powered Autonomous Boat



I have an idea to make a autonomous boat powered by solar panels.  I am considering using the netduino controller to operate the system.  I envision a boat that has several batteries to power the controller, servos, communications and whatever else.  I don't have a clue as to how to engineer the power system using solar panels.

From my research, I've determined that I would need to have the solar power indirectly charge the batteries - so that I boat can operate while the batteries are charged.  I would think I would need some sort of regulator that would know when one of the batteries in the array needs to be charged.  Or if that is not possible, I think a system where the boat uses the batteries until depleted, then a device would switch to charge mode.

At any rate, I'm open to suggestions whatever they may be.  I have very little understanding of electricity that any advice would be much appreciated.  I have provided the specs of the materials that I would need below:

1 arduino controller - 5v
12V 4500mAh Lead Acid Battery Pack
  -to power the motor and controls
web cam - 5v

Over all my question is what do I need to power the above, and what will be my limitations?

HI tes
Yes this would be quite possible but i do not have much elec knowledge so cant go into any detail.
But why do it in the first place, just replace the batteries when they run out.
This whole set up will rely on your elec knowledge in faultfinding etc that you do not have.
As a matter of interest last year someone tried to put a yacht together to sale across the Atlantic from the UK to the USA but the craft only about a 4 ft long disappeared!


RC Model Airplanes/Cars/Boats

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Martin Seymour


My experiance is mainly in Ic powered model boats scale and semi scale. size from 2ft to 7ft long using glow plug and petrol engines. But NOT multi boats. I have converted many chainsaw and strimmer engines for this purpose. also designed and built three sizes of model waterjets for model boats.


Past/Present clients
Many members of the public ---- hobbies.

©2017 About.com. All rights reserved.