Saturday, January 7, 2017

Then There Was Light With A LuminAID

Every Saturday morning, when I can, I watch a show called Xploration Station. (  It is a science show mostly geared to and featuring young people. It discusses all aspects of science and inventions using science to make the world a better place.  It is presented in a way I can understand.  I learn so much.  I am amazed at all the brilliant people in the world who think outside the box. 

On a recent show I saw a piece about a solar lantern. There is a need for inexpensive lighting in underdeveloped countries.  Kerosene lanterns have a lot of disadvantages, so they took the concept of solar panels and created a lantern using only the power of the sun. It is good for the environment and is more practical for sunny areas which have less wind and water.

It is inexpensive to make and has changed life in these countries.  Imagine what it would be like to go from no electric lights to having an easy way to light the way.

I thought to myself if this would work for underdeveloped countries, it would surely work for me during a power outage or walking out to the garage when it is dark.  I have an awesome beanie hat with a light on it, but the LuminAID solar lantern would add even more light.

I went online and found a company from Wisconsin that sells this solar lantern.  I ordered it and was surprised how it was packaged.  It came in a flat package about 4" by 4" by 1".  The information on the package said this technology was developed by two architecture students after the Haiti Earthquake in 2010.

When you open the package it unfolds into a lantern.  This is a smaller size but they do come in a variety of sizes.  This would be a perfect size to hang in a tent or just have available in the house.

All you do to charge it is put it in direct sunlight and let it gather the sun's rays.  Then whenever a lantern is needed, light is available.  It will stay charged in storage for over a year.  It's battery lasts 12 hours on the low beam.  It is very lightweight and could be collapsed to carry in a backpack or a car.  It's waterproof and it floats.  There is no worry about finding a flashlight with fresh batteries or finding the matches for a candle.  It has an extra bright beam, a high beam, a low beam and a flashing light.  We haven't needed it for a nighttime power outage, but I do take it outside in the dark.  It sheds a lot of light to scare off any creatures lurking in our woods.  I'm happy to have it, but for people in areas without electric lights, it must be a game changer.

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