This breakout board may well be the last current sensing solution you every need to buy. Not only can it do the work of two multimeters, but it can do it with amazing precision and flexibility. With it you can measure high or low side DC current, the bus voltage, and have it automatically calculate the power. It can do so over impressive voltage, current, and temperature ranges with better than 1% accuracy, all while delivering the data in an easy to use format over I2C.
Works great with any microcontroller that is CircuitPython or Arduino compatible as well as single board computers such as the Raspberry Pi. It is compatible with 3V or 5V logic and can measure bus voltages up to +36VDC. Not for use with AC voltages.
Most current-measuring devices operate with some notable constraints that limit what they can be used for. Many are low-side only which can cause issues as the ground reference changes with current. Others like its little sister the INA219B avoid this by measuring on the high side but need to change their shunt resistor to measure different current ranges. The INA260 avoids these limitations, and with it’s integrated precision shunt resistor it can be used to measure as much as +26V at up to 3.5A Continuous on either the high or low side. Wow!
The voltage across the integrated 2 milliohm (.002 ohms!), 0.1% shunt resistor is measured by the internal 16 bit ADC, allowing for measurements over the impressive current range with a resolution of 1.5 mA. (The resistance of the resistor is so low that some multimeters will register it as a short!)
In a high side configuration the bus voltage measurement and power calculation can be retrieved accurately, however advanced hackers wanting to measure bus voltage in a low side configuration will need to cut the jumper connecting V+ to VBUS and connect the VBUS pin to the voltage bus.
Comes as a fully assembled breakout board with a 5.08mm terminal block (extra chunky!) and header. Some light soldering is required to attach the header and terminal block.
- 0.1 ohm 1% 2W current sense resistor
- Up to +60V target voltage
- EagleCAD PCB files in GitHub
- Uses the INA169 chip, see datasheet for detailed specifications
- Fritzing object in the Adafruit Fritzing library