Battery pack for ROV


I don’t know much about batteries. I just got my 2.8 developer kit and I want to jump in and start building.
My question is though, could I get around buying the battery tubes and just use a power bank like this one?

I could snip the usb cable and rewire it. This would allow me to have the battery in a WEC and it would potentially save me the weight from the battery tubes.

Any help/advice is welcome I am new at this!
Thank you in advance!


I would first check what the discharge rate it- one aspect of our battery choice is that is provides enough current at any given time to account for the inevitable power spikes you see when running motors. If the battery has a protection circuit it might not allow the ROV or whatever load you are powering to consume the amount of power it needs.


This battery bank can only supply 2100mA @ 5V if you cut the cable and power the ROV from the output, but you should be able to draw more current by pulling the battery bank apart and accessing the cells directly. If this is the way you want to power your ROV you will need more than one bank. The ROV power system is usually configured as 6x cells 3300mAh @ 3.2V, wired in 2x 9.6V banks. You will be able to develop on the BBB with the battery bank but the controller board needs more than 5V to run properly.


Another alternative that you can use is a power supply. One of our welding stations is a multifunction station that includes soldering station, heat gun and power supply. We use it all the time to power different things. If you just want to power the BBB, a usb cable from your laptop is sufficient. If you also want to run the controller board, you might get away with using 2 x power banks (try and hook up one bank to your topside Interface and another to the Bbb. As long as you’re not running any of the “heavy” consumers like motors of camera feed, I think you should be ok. Please let us know what option you went for and how it worked out for you. Happy hacking!


If you want to use the OpenROV for the typical application, conventional power banks like the one linked are simply not powerful enough - not only in terms of voltage supply but also in terms of current. Depending on your built and your future plans for the ROV I would recommend the usual power supply.


So I got the batteries on the openrov shop but I still have a curiosity of swapping the batteries. I found this powerbank with 20000mAh which would be enough as the 6 Li-FePO4 have collectively 19800mAh.

I am uncertain though becuse I don’t know much about discharge rates etc and don’t want to overload the harware.

I was hoping someone with some knowledge could help!

Thanks again!!!

Anker 20000mAh Portable Charger PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology for iPhone, iPad & Samsung Galaxy & More - Black


I’m glad you have ordered the standard battery system. If cheap battery banks were a viable power solution for the ROV then everyone would be using them. So it should be no surprise when I say I think that this pack won’t work very well. It would probably be okay to develop on but I would be hesitant about running the motors or any other devices using large amounts of power. Pretty much any power bank won’t work well - except maybe the massive ones you can jump start a car from. But then again they are more expensive than buying the correct batteries. This power bank will only discharge at 4.8A. The LiFePO4 setup provides 6 batteries @ 9.9A continuous and 19.8A pulse each or up to 20A - 40A total. (but this is limited by the poly fuse and that’s a different topic) So even though the capacity is similar, a battery bank designed for charging phones will never do the job, but 13 battery banks would probably work OK…