USB Type-C introduced significant changes to the USB standard. The reversible connector eliminated the issue of trying to plug the connector in the right way every time. Another issue it addressed was allowing the flexibility to have USB power with an adjustable USB voltage from anywhere between 5V and 20V and up to 100W of power. The SparkFun Power Delivery Board takes advantage of the power delivery standard with the use of a standalone controller from STMicroelectronics, the STUSB4500.
SparkFun has now introduced a new method for powering your projects. This is possible through the flexibility of the USB Power Delivery Standard, which is a standalone USB Type-C power board with three configurable power delivery profiles.
Xtopher from SparkFun says
“Traditional power adapters can provide a wide range of current but the voltage stays fixed at 5V.” The company say “With the SparkFun Power Delivery Board’s USB-C connection it has the ability to achieve higher voltages, typically 5-20V and up to 100W of power. The Power Delivery Board uses a standalone controller to negotiate with the power adapters and have them switch to a higher voltage other than just 5V. This uses the same power adapter for different projects rather than relying on multiple power adapters to provide different output voltages.”
SparkFun Power Delivery Board is based on an STMicroelectronics STUSB4500 USB Power Delivery controller, which enables the negotiation of power delivery without an external microcontroller. However, SparkFun states that a microcontroller is still required for configuration, with the settings being stored in a non-volatile storage space on the controller itself. The controller board consists of input and output voltage ranges of 5-20V, with output current clocking up to 5A across three user-configurable power delivery profiles. It has a full USB Type-C Rev. 1.2 and USB Power Delivery Rev. 2.0 certification, and enables integrated VBUS voltage monitoring and PMOS switch gate drivers. Apart from its solderable pin headers, available also is a singular 3.3V Qwiic connector for solder-free connection into SparkFun‘s quick-connect I2C ecosystem. To configure the board, you will need the I2C bus. The Qwiic system makes it easy to connect the Power Delivery board to a microcontroller to set the NVM parameters to power your project via the Qwiic connector. Depending on your application, you can also connect to the I2C bus via the plated through holes for SDA and SCL.
The Power Delivery Board is available now for $24.95 before volume pricing on the SparkFun webshop. Available also is a hook-up guide available on the company’s learning platform. SparkFun has also written a library to control the Power Delivery board for the STUSB4500. You can obtain this library through the Arduino Library Manager. By searching for STUSB4500, you should see one written by SparkFun Electronics and you should be able to install the latest version. If you prefer downloading libraries manually, you can grab them from the GitHub Repository.