As their prices are dropping and computing powers are increasing, the field of applications for single board computers is widening. In many embedded and networking application, their compact form factor and low power consumption make them preferred to traditional, larger sized computers, even in industrial environments.
In most critical control and data applications uninterruptible operation is required or beneficial, however the use of large, mains voltage uninterruptible power supply units is discouraged, as it negates most benefits of using a single board in the first place.
In my thesis, I design and prototype a compact USB-based uninterruptible power supply, focusing on compatibility with single board computers.
I present the hardware design procedure from specifying the device, to the assembly and testing of the first prototype. In the process, I elaborate on the circuit topology being used, choose the components to satisfy the specifications, and present the guidelines for designing the printed circuit board.
While creating the software, I discuss planning the main program structure, and the steps of building the code in a microcontroller-based system.
I demonstrate the challenges in control system design and present a possible solution by tuning and implementing a set of controllers of my choice.
Finally, I verify my work by measuring and testing the finished prototype. I evaluate the design and examine possibilities for further development.