As we all know, battery life has been a major setback ever since the smartphone era, even though we’ve had devices with outstanding displays, innovative features and an impressive performance, you hardly come across a smartphone that will last up to two days without connecting it to a power source, a higher percentage of smartphones don’t even last up to a day (those in countries where electricity isn’t steady suffer more on this). Gosh I miss those days where you could actually use a phone for close to a week or even more without connecting it to electricity, you know the smartphone I am talking about right? Definitely monochrome!
While manufacturers are working on several techniques to fix this issue, (Increasing the battery capacity, wireless and quick charging) a crowdfunded Indiegogo project has produced an initiative to create sustainable energy for smartphone users. This will enable smartphone users or related devices to recharge their devices with green, solar power.
The product made by Arkyne Technologies is called the Bioo Lite, it takes the form of a plant pot which apparently, harvests solar energy through natural photosynthesis, and use the harvested energy to recharge a device such as a mobile phone through a USB port. In simple terms, the plant pot uses a plant’s biological elements expelled after photosynthesis to create electricity, which is then passed along to a connected device via a USB port and charges it. Concerning the plant, the company says the plant pot doesn’t harm the plant and that the system is self-regenerating.
Beneath the plant are two smaller pots of bacteria that react with water, once the plant starts converting sunlight into energy, the compounds created in the soil trickle through a semi-permeable membrane covering the bacteria pots. After which the bacteria then feeds on the compounds creating electrons which are gathered by a nano-wire network. Electrons gathered are stored in a battery and at the bottom of the pot which is connected to a USB cable kept on the surface of the pot.
Unlike similar products that rely on solar panels, the Boo Lite doesn’t, for now not much has been said concerning Boo Lite’s efficiency or the actual time it requires to fully charge a battery but according to the creators the plant pot can recharge a smartphone three times a day, devices can even be charged over night with a healthy medium sized plant (any plant or soil can be used). Concerning the speed it takes to charge, the creators claim the output is 3.5 volts which is roughly equivalent to the power that comes out of a USB port on a computer.
The Indiegogo campaign fixed a goal of €15,000, this target had been exceeded already, as of now the project has raised over €32,000 from about 300 backers. The team are looking to start shipping the pots at the end of this year.
Sustainable energy is energy that is consumed at insignificant rates compared to its supply and with manageable collateral effects, especially environmental effects. Another common definition of sustainable energy is an energy system that serves the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Technologies that promote sustainable energy include renewable energy sources, such as hydroelectricity, solar energy (the radiant light and heat from the Sun harnessed using technologies such as solar heating, photovoltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture and artificial photosynthesis), wind energy, wave power, geothermal energy, bioenergy, tidal power and also technologies designed to improve energy efficiency.