MAXREFDES1215: Supercapacitor-based Energy Harvester Using the MAX17220


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Supercapacitors are increasingly being used in a number of applications in electric vehicles, transportation equipment, industrial machinery and utility grids. In the MAXREFDES1215, a supercapacitor-based energy harvester is demonstrated using the MAX17220. The circuit uses a supercapacitor to provide backup energy. The first stage of the circuit charges a supercapacitor, and the second stage of the circuit regulates the voltage from the supercapacitor to supply various sensors with a steady output voltage. In this system, the MAX17220 is used for regulating the output voltage from the supercapacitor.

The MAX17220 is an ultra-low quiescent current boost (step-up) DC-DC converter with a 225mA peak inductor current limit and True Shutdown. True Shutdown disconnects the output from the input with no forward or reverse current. The output voltage is selectable using a single standard 1% resistor. MAX17220 has post-startup enable transient protection (ETP), allowing the output to remain regulated for input voltages down to 400mV, depending on load current. The MAX17220 offers ultra-low quiescent current, small total solution size, and high efficiency throughout the entire load range. These features make this product especially suitable for use in battery-powered medical equipment, low-power wireless communication products, primary-cell and secondary-cell portable systems, and tiny, low-power IoT sensors.


Designed, Built, Tested

Board pictured here has been fully assembled and tested. Not available for sale.



Input Type Vin(Min) Vin(Max) Iout(Max) Single/Multiple Output Vout(V) Pout(W) Isolated/Non-Isolated Topology
DC 2.3 2.7 0.05 - 3.3 0.165 Non-Isolated Boost


Input Type DC
Vin(Min) 2.3
Vin(Max) 2.7
Iout(Max) 0.05
Single/Multiple Output -
Vout(V) 3.3
Pout(W) 0.165
Isolated/Non-Isolated Non-Isolated
Topology Boost

Maxim Devices (1)

Part Number Name Product Family Order Design kits and evaluation modules
MAX17220 400mV to 5.5V Input, nanoPower Synchronous Boost Converter with True Shutdown Switching Regulator - Switching Regulators Buy Now Design Kits

Maxim Devices (1)

Part Number Product Family
Switching Regulator - Switching Regulators
400mV to 5.5V Input, nanoPower Synchronous Boost Converter with True Shutdown

Design Files (4)

Title Type Size Date
maxrefdes1215-bom PDF 78KB 2019-04-26
maxrefdes1215-pcb PDF 430KB 2019-04-26
MAXREFDES1215 Design Verification Testing PDF 436KB 2019-04-26
maxrefdes1215-schematic PDF 11KB 2019-04-26
Date Type


(PDF, 78KB)



(PDF, 430KB)


MAXREFDES1215 Design Verification Testing

(PDF, 436KB)



(PDF, 11KB)

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