Introduction: DC-DC Boost Converter MT3608
This tutorial will show how to use the MT3608 boost converter to power up devices requiring different voltages. We will show which are the best types of batteries to use with the converter and how to get more than just one output from the converter.
We will explain why we have chosen this converter and for what kind of projects can we use it.
Just a small note before we get started: When working with robotics and electronics please don't overlook the importance of power distribution.
- MT3608 DC-DC Converter
- 4.8 Ni-MH Battery Pack
- Arduino Uno
- Jumper Wires
- 2S Li-Po or Li-Ion Battery
- 2A Fuse
Step 1: Pinout Overview
Here you can see how the MT3608 module looks like. You can notice that the MT3608 is an IC, and the module is a circuit built around the IC to make it work as an adjustable converter.
PINOUT for MT3608 module is:
IN+ Here we connect the red wire from the battery (or the power source), this is VCC or VIN (2V - 24V)
IN- Here we connect the black wire from the battery (or the power source), this is ground, GND or V--
OUT+ Here we connect the positive voltage of the power distribution circuit or a component powered
OUT- Here we connect the ground of the power distribution circuit or a component powered
Step 2: Adjusting Output
This is a boost converter meaning that it will take lower voltage and convert it into higher voltage. To adjust the voltage we have to do a couple of steps.
- Connect the converter with the battery or other power source.
- Set the multimeter to read the voltage and connect the output of the converter to it. Now you can already see the voltage on the output.
- Adjust the trimmer (here 100k Ohm) with a tiny screwdriver until the voltage is set to the desired output. Feel free to turn the trimmer in both directions to get the feeling how to work with it. Sometimes when you use the converter for the first time you will have to rotate the trimmer screw 5-10 full circles to get it working. Play with it until you get the feeling.
- Connect the device/module you want to power instead of the multimeter.
Step 3: Current Rating
The steady current rating of the IC MT3608 is 2 A, the chip is pretty small so it’s difficult to disperse the accumulated heat. We can always add at least a small heat sink but don’t expect it to have a current rating more than 2 A.
Step 4: High Current Protection
Another thing to mention when working with power modules like converters is that they will burn out if the current goes too high. I believe that you have already understood that from the step above, but how to protect the IC from the high current?
Here we would like to introduce another component: the Fuse. In this specific case our converter needs protection from 2 Amps. So we will take a 2 Amp fuse and wire it according to the image below. This will provide the necessary protection for our IC.
Inside the Fuse there is a thin wire made of a material which melts on low temperatures, the thickness of the wire is carefully adjusted during the manufacturing so that the wire will break (or unsolder) if the current goes above 2 Amps. This will stop the current flow and the high current won't be able to come to the converter. Of course this means that we will have to replace the Fuse (because it's melted now) and correct the circuit which tried to draw too much current. If you want to know more about the fuses please refer to our tutorial on them when we release it.
Step 5: Powering 5V Controller and 3.3V Voltage Regulator From a Single Source
Here is an example that includes everything mentioned above. We will summarize everything with the wiring steps:
- Connect the Ni-MH battery pack with the converter.
- Adjust the voltage to 5V with the multimeter connected on the output.
- Connect the ground and the VCC from the battery with the converter's input terminals.
- Connect the positive output with the 5V on the Arduino and through a breadboard.
- Connect the negative output with the GND on the Arduino.
- To see the details about the wiring of the LM317 Voltage Regulator please refer to that section.
Step 6: Conclusion
We would like to summarize what we have shown here.
- Use MT3608 to convert voltage from low (2 - 25) to high
- Always use a Multimeter to check the voltage level on the output before connecting other devices/modules
- Use MT3608 for 2 Amps or lower
- Use a 2 Amp Fuse to protect MT3608 if you are powering motors and drawing unpredictable currents
- By using converters you are providing stable voltage to your circuits with sufficient current which you can use to reliably control motors, in this way you will not have reduced behavior with the batteries voltage drop over time
You can download the models we have used in this tutorial from our GrabCAD account:
You can see our other tutorials on Instructables: