We’ve spent the last couple of weeks vetting the last prototype. We tested inputs from solar panels, wall adapters, and USB. We’ve varied the load on the energyShield. In all of this we found a few bugs. Trying to pinpoint the cause of these bugs was a challenge.

Yikes!
Yikes!

As you can see, it was complicated. We made four prototypes, and in the course of testing, two of them gave up…

They all look like ICU patients with test leads and new circuitry soldered everywhere.

And some even got cannibalized in the process…

Donated a capacitor, after death, for scientific research.
Donated a capacitor, after death, for scientific research.

Finally, we have found a couple of tweaks to the circuit that have solved our problem. Yesterday (Monday) we ordered the PCB for the next, and hopefully, the final prototype. It will arrive sometime next week. In the meantime we are working on the design of a test stand for the energyShield, to ensure that each energyShield meets specifications. We are also beginning to order parts from our suppliers.

I’m am excited that this project is moving forward and I know that all of you are eager to receive your rewards. Once we determine that the design is ready to go, the manufacturing will take about a month, then we will ship the finished product to you. When we created the original timeline for the project we thought we had a “manufacturing ready” design and only anticipated minor revisions. Redesigning the energyShield to include the breakout header, 3.3V output, solar charging, and USB charging has taken a while, but in my opinion, the new design is worth every bit of time we’ve spent on it. I hope everyone is as happy with it as we are.

Thank you all for your patience and support. We will continue to keep you updated as we move through this process.

The NightShade Team