Posted on 04 December 2009
Burr. It’s getting chilly out there, but thanks to the German designer Yiran Qian’s dream of an “Endless Warm: you will never have to have frozen fingers again. Yiran conceptualized the integration of solar panels into winter hats and gloves for Design Boom’s Green Life Design Competition. And even though this is still just in the idea phase this concept is a neat idea that hopefully in the future will help melt away our winter blues.
Posted on 23 March 2009
I love simple solutions and nothing seems simpler than Practical Solar’s Home Heating- Mirrors. The concept is so basic it makes me wonder why this is relatively new solar technology for homes.
Like the massive desert solar farms that use hundreds of mirrors to reflect light at a central pipe with liquid in it, home-heating mirrors simply reflect the sun’s light at your home to heat it.
All it takes is two such mirrors pointed at your home, ideally at a window, to generate as much warmth as a space heater.
Of course these mirrors would only be useful to in sunny yet cold climates but there are plenty of people who fit that bill. Speaking of bills, it’s a great way to keep those expensive summer bills down while also providing plenty of natural light. Who needs to flick the light switch when you’ve got concentrated solar energy illuminating your room?
What do you think, does Practical Solar have a good idea here? Let us know what you think in the comment section.
Posted on 03 February 2009
The clearly capable designers of the Aptera 2e have another exciting environmentally friendly vehicle on the way – a solar powered pontoon boat. The Aptera 2e designers have reworked the Tamarack Lake Electric Boat Company’s signature eco-friendly pontoon boat; the Loon and the results are impressive.
Not only are the twin hulls essentially puncture resistant through their integration with the deck, but the solar panels on the roof of the boat can be lowered to the sides for convenient off-water transportation.
The most innovative aspect of this solar powered boat is something we are seeing more often in cutting-edge eco-friendly electronic systems, which is its ability to feed energy back into the power grid. When the 1,000 watt solar panels have fully charged the battery the excess energy can be sent back into the grid while it sits plugged in at the dock.
Additionally, the materials used to build the boat get two eco-ninja thumbs up and include: recycled plastic, natural fibers and bamboo. My favorite part of the construction is its manatee-friendly shroud that houses the propeller blades. Oh the huge manatee!
The original Loon had a range of over 30 miles and a top speed of 6 knots. We haven’t seen the specs for the new model but we are expecting they will see significant improvement.
Posted on 08 December 2008
The Voltaic Generator Laptop messenger style bag is the first solar bag actually powerful enough to charge a laptop, and it does it using the latest, state-of-the-art high efficiency solar cells. It includes a battery pack custom designed to efficiently store and convert the electricity generated. It will also charge cell phones and most other hand held electronics, making the ultimate accessory for the eco-minded. The solar panel generates up to 15 watts using 20% efficienct cells, enough to fully charge the Voltaic battery in about five hours. The solar panel is waterproof, scratch resistant, and UV resistant.
Posted on 05 December 2008
Solar Camera Gear Bags give photographers an extra power source for long outdoor shoots . The large cavity solar bags can handle a digital SLR camera and three lenses with room for even more accessories. Many solar camera bags feature adjustable dividers and foam to customize the interior to fit your specific camera gear needs.
The top covers feature a light-weight, flexible solar charging module that can be utilized using your existing 12V auto adapter. You can charge your camera batteries or AA batteries using the proper charging unit made for particular digital camera.
Posted on 02 December 2008
Considering a solar hot water system for your home? You should! Solar hot water is a fast-growing renewable energy technology. The benefits of installing a solar water heating system in your home are vast. Supplemental water heating from the sun can provide 40-70% of your domestic hot water needs, and if you live in the south, you could save between 50% and 80% on your water heating bill by installing a solar water heating system.
A small investment of a few thousand dollars will last at least thirty years and can pay for itself with five years. To make it even more appealing, many state and local governments are offering rebates and tax incentives for people who choose to use solar water heaters in their homes. The benefits also show up as reduced dependence on oil and other fossil fuels and a much lower cost than traditional hot water heaters. A solar water heating system is not polluting the environment with fumes and exhaust from the burning of fuel.
Posted on 02 December 2008
Foldable solar panels are lightweight and portable options for charging batteries to power cell phones and lap top computers. The solar panels are generally less than 5 pounds and are less than 2 inches thick when folded. Companies like Global Solar make portable solar panels designed to charge and maintain your batteries and provide power for your portable electronics including cell phones, PDA devices, and MP3 players.
These kins of portable solar products are perfect for campers, hikers or anyone who spends lots of time outdoors. Thin-film photovoltaic technology is perfect for charging many consumer products, solar cell designs are a proven success currently being used in space, military equipment, and large grid systems.
Posted on 20 November 2008
Solzar has introduced the MSolar, a small system perfect for those emergency situations. With solar battery systems becoming lighter and smaller in power requirement this gives MSolar the edge in providing light weight, cost efficient solar portable power systems for various applications.
The MSolar device comes in a James Bond-like metal briefcase that is wired with solar panels and includes electronic accessories and batteries. The device comes in three sizes, 20W, 50W and 100W, and all three have a battery voltage of 12V and take 10 hours to charge. Other than emergency power uses, the MSolar can be used for recreation and for temporary lighting.