Power Management V2

This module lets you manage the power modes of the micro:bit V2.

There are two micro:bit board low power modes that can be requested from MicroPython:

  • Deep Sleep: Low power mode where the board can be woken up via multiple sources (pins, button presses, or a timer) and resume operation.
  • Off: The power mode with the lowest power consumption, the only way to wake up the board is via the reset button, or by plugging the USB cable while on battery power. When the board wakes up it will restart and execute your programme from the beginning.

More information on how these low power modes work can be found in the Detailed Information section.



Power down the board to the lowest possible power mode.

This is the equivalent to pressing the reset button for a few second, to set the board in “Off mode”.

The micro:bit will only wake up if the reset button is pressed or, if on battery power, when a USB cable is connected.

When the board wakes up it will start for a reset state, so your programme will start running from the beginning.

power.deep_sleep(ms=None, wake_on=None, run_every=False)

Set the micro:bit into a low power mode where it can wake up and continue operation.

The programme state is preserved and when it wakes up it will resume operation where it left off.

Deep Sleep mode will consume more battery power than Off mode.

The wake up sources are configured via arguments.

If no wake up sources have been configured it will sleep until the reset button is pressed (which resets the board) or, in battery power, when the USB cable is inserted.

  • ms – A time in milliseconds to wait before it wakes up.
  • wake_on – A single instance or a tuple of pins and/or buttons to wake up the board, e.g. deep_sleep(wake_on=button_a) or deep_sleep(wake_on=(pin0, pin2, button_b)).
  • run_every – Set to True to wake up with each microbit.run_every scheduled run.


Example programme showing the power management API:

Shows a silly face on the display every 10 seconds.
When button A is pressed it goes into Deep Sleep mode, and wakes 30 minutes later,
or by pressing button A again.
When button B is pressed it goes into to Off mode.
from microbit import *
import power

def silly_face():

while True:
    if button_b.is_pressed():
        # In this mode the micro:bit can only wake up via the reset button
        # This line of code will never be executed, as waking up from this
        # mode starts the programme from the beginning
    elif button_a.is_pressed():
        # Go into Deep Sleep with multiple wake up sources
            wake_on=(pin0, pin1, button_a),
            ms=30*1000,        # In 30 seconds it wakes up anyway
            run_every=False,   # Stops run_every from waking up the board
        # When the micro:bit wakes up will it continue running from here
        # Blink a few times to show you are waking up
        display.show([Image("99099:09090:99099:09990"), Image.ASLEEP] * 3, 250)

Example using data logging:

from microbit import *
import power
import log

# Log the temperature every 5 minutes
def log_temperature():

while True:
    if button_a.is_pressed():
        # Display the temperature when button A is pressed
    # To go sleep and wake up with run_every or button A
    power.deep_sleep(wake_on=button_a, run_every=True)

Detailed Information

The micro:bit board has two microcontrollers (MCUs), which can be independently asleep or awake:

  • Target MCU - Where MicroPython and your code run.
  • Interface MCU - A secondary microcontroller that provides the USB functionality, like the MICROBIT USB drive, and the USB serial interface.

Each MCU can be in one of these “MCU power modes”:

  • Awake: Running normally.
  • Sleep: A low power mode where the MCU can be woken up from different sources and continue operation.
  • Power Down: The lowest power mode for an individual MCU, when it wakes up it will start from reset.

The Python code can request a “board power mode”, in this case Deep Sleep or Off, which will set the Target into a specific “MCU power mode”, but the Interface MCU mode will depend on the micro:bit power source, i.e. if it’s powered via USB (connector to a computer) or battery.

In essence, on battery power the Interface MCU can go into a low power mode, but when it is connected to a computer via USB, it will stay awake to maintain the USB connection.

USB Powered (Interface always awake)

Board Power Mode Target MCU Mode Interface MCU mode
Deep Sleep 💤 Sleep ⏰ Awake
Off 📴 Power Down ⏰ Awake (red LED blinking)

Battery Powered

Board Power Mode Target MCU Mode Interface MCU mode
Deep Sleep 💤 Sleep 💤 Sleep
Off 📴 Power Down 📴 Power Down