New solar gadgets: clever and useful

The ClicLite charger is also small and handy and can be taken anywhere.

Solar technology fascination: the ability to generate electricity from solar energy seems to simply inspire the creativity of inventors and designers. New, practical and beautiful products which are operated by solar power are perpetually going on the market. Some are peculiar, some funny, some especially useful – so we are on the lookout for interesting developments.

Sunlight in a mason jar
Sun Jar is the name of a somewhat unique type of solar lamp that is capable of capturing sunlight during the day that can be used at in the evening or overnight. Simply place the jar with its lid open in the sun or moonlight and it will charge in a matter of three hours. Then close the lid: the glass will remain lit for about five hours. Ideal for camping or a cosy evening of snuggling for two on the balcony. The sunlit mason jar comes from the design firm suck.uk and is distributed by www.coolstuff.de.

Come on, let’s solve the solar charger puzzle!
A young start-up company from Berlin called Sonnenrepublik manufactures Cliccs. These are matchbox sized boxes with frame in six colours that house powerful crystalline solar cells. Additional Cliccs can be docked on all four sides so the capacity, colour and shape can be changed individually. Do not forget the ClicLite or a mini solar charger which serves as both a key chain and miniature light. Cliccs can even be charged on the move with a smartphone or Tablet and attach to bags, backpacks or clothing using clips. Chief executive Oliver Lang has a vision of a Clicc community: „There is a whole world of solar modules featuring various colours, editions and chargers. We develop all these products ourselves. Later, terminal devices from industry partners can be developed for us or for their own product range,“ he predicts. Order the kit and all its accessories quickly and easily at www.clicc.de.

Inflatable lanterns
For those who like camping or long hiking trips, the inflatable lantern is the perfect gadget. The built-in lithium-ion batteries completely charge in about eight hours of sunlight exposure. The lantern will emit light for up to twelve hours. Depending on the manufacturer’s specifications, a single charge lasts up to three months. The PVC case is waterproof. And if anything happens while you are out and about, the lantern has an alarm which is also visible from afar thanks to its flashing light function. To order, please visit www.radbag.de.

The first e-bike with solar charging capability
The e-bikes from LEAOS with the expressive unisex design are handmade in Italy and offer everything you would expect from a high quality e-bike. The NuVinci Harmony gearshift as well as the carbon handlebars with an integrated display, carbon mudguards and lighting system come as standard. The battery is made by the German manufacturer BMZ. The 45 km/h and 25 km/h versions are available. Wood and leather are also available by special order. Really what makes the LEAOS so unique is the possibility to equip it with a solar loading panel. The high quality solar film perfectly suits the sleek design and makes the e-biker independent of conventional power sources. The current charge level of the battery can be read on the screen at any time. Should the solar energy run out, LEAOS Solar can also be recharged at a fast charging station. You can configure and order your very own dream bike on the manufacturer’s homepage at www.leaos.com.

God save the Queen
For one thing or another, you will surely ask yourself, „Do I need this?“ The honest answer: „Not really.“ But it’s amusing when the Queen graciously welcomes visitors whether out the window, in the dining room or next to the sofa. Even in the guest bathroom, the miniature version is a welcome guest. She tirelessly and discreetly waves her hand because solar cells are hidden in her handbag. Those who are not as loyal to the king could instead take a waving Albert Einstein or Pope into their home. The decorative figures from Kikkerland are available for purchase from the online shop www.spuersinn24.de.

Shade maker and sun catcher in one
Meet Dalia, a dual-form parasol. On one hand, it provides shade and on the other, it collects solar energy. How does it do it? It leans into the sun by its own doing, opens in the morning and closes again automatically in the evening. Its solar panels absorb the sun’s rays. The solar energy is stored in a battery in the base and can be accessed at any time. Dalia is available in two design variants: as an entry-level leaf version (595 euros) and as an exclusive crowd variant (2,995 euros). Please be advised: Dalia is not yet for sale. The manufacturer EnBW would like to implement the idea only in series if a market does, indeed, exist and encourages all interested parties to take part in a crowdfunding project. If enough customers give a signal to the company in the form of their investments, Dalia will go into production. You may pre-order the product and express your desire to buy on www.startnext.de.

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