Outdoor Solar Charging Concepts We’d Hope to Commonly See
There are many innovations within the realm of alternative and renewable energy. In fact, it is perhaps the growth of innovation and ideas that indirectly helped in improving its current development. For example, the introduction of different shape configurations aided our understanding and knowledge in potentially increasing the solar energy yield of current PV panels.
Sadly though, not all innovative ideas are effective in all aspects, and when equated with the harsh economics of renewable energy today, most of them are even unable to leave the drawing board. Still however, I can’t help but wish that these ideas came true, that we should be able to enjoy some of the things that these ideas could have given us.
Park benches may be already convenient enough for the regular pedestrian, but since it’s always exposed to the sun, it certainly wouldn’t hurt to add a few solar energy-based features. Meet the Solar Bench, your free solar powered Wi-Fi hotspot. Aside from providing you free and clean internet access, it could also serve as street illumination, using its collected reserve energies. As you may have seen in its introductory page, it uses a thin-film type solar panel. Solar Bench was already introduced a couple of years back, but sadly still remains as a floating concept.
During the late decades of the 20th century, payphone booths have been one of the better known avenues of local technology usage, not just because of the cheap availability of wired communication, but with the convenient placement of booths all over a town or city. Street Charge revives this location-convenience concept, but instead of a wired phone, they would transform everyday street signs and posts into a charging station. The Street Charge is technically a simple long strip of solar PV cells with several plug-in conduits for charging portable gadgets. Should the concept eventually get widespread, then we would never be that far from a quick smartphone or tablet energy boost.
This may have the same idea as the previous concept, but the SolarPump Charging Station is actually more of a dedicated service station than a simple “charging booth”. In fact, if we ignore the solar panels and seats at its sides, it would look like a typical air pumping station. Instead of an actual pump or plug though, it has different connectors where you can connect all your electronic items for an (electric) charge. The entire unit is even open at the back, so you could simply plug and place you larger gadgets in while comfortably seated.
You might have heard of ice-cream trucks that use solar energy to keep their refrigerators operational. Well this one takes the exact same idea of exploiting the productive wonders of hot summer days, but is only lowered in overall scale. The basic idea was a joint venture between IJs&Zopie and Odenwald Organics. Unlike the previous three ideas though, this solar-powered ice-cream cart has actually went past the concept stage, and is currently on its way towards production.
I’m sure that there are many other examples out there, but I have given these four just to give you a glimpse on what kind of green ideas are actually missed or are still floating as a concept due to economic and sometimes practicality constraints.
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