Tindie, the community marketplace for makers, has turned up another gem in the form of a programmable fuse for breadboarding. Designed by Kaktus, a 28-year-old electrochemistry student from the Czech Republic, BFuse looks like a great way to protect expensive components during prototyping and can be programmed via an on-board ATtiny microcontroller.
A lot of mistakes can happen during prototyping: Misplacing components, creating random shorts or simply making things wrong. BFuse can help saving precious components that would otherwise be damaged by such mistakes. It works like a regular fuse, only better. BFuse constantly compares the load current with the value set by the trimmer. If an overcurrent occurs, it disconnects the load by switching off a P-channel MOSFET. It also notifies the user by lighting a red LED. A green LED indicates that the load is connected. Even though the fuse is designed for operations up to 1A, it can measure current up to 6A, giving you options to allow for some inrush current for capacitive loads. BFuse is powered by the same line it protects, no extra power needed. BFuse not only protects against overcurrent but it has also built-in reverse polarity protection. Moreover, it has a transient-voltage suppressor on both its input and output. BFuse was tested on a 22-Amp Statron stabilised power source for short-circuit and startup into short-circuit – it passed with flying colours.BFuse is available to buy as a kit for £11.16, with shipping to the UK starting at £1.17.