Although the 21st Century has seen the dawn of 3D printers, the discovery of new Earth-like planets and seen the rise of the convenient smart phone, approximately 1.5 billion people around the globe remain without access to a stable or safe source of light. Commonly in some of the world's poorest regions, kerosene lanterns are the standard form of night time lighting, which leads to the possibility of fires, explosions, asphyxiation and toxic fumes. Safe and renewable solar lighting presents an obvious solution to this problem and the NOMAD solar lamp has been created for just that.
Developed by the Belgium company O-Sun, the Nomad solar lamp is similar to the Solar Pebble, LuminAID, Sollight and Wakawaka. It has been created primarily to meet the needs of families in developing countries. Gizmag previewed the rechargeable solar lamp during the Salone del Mobile and due to its contemporary design and ecological attributes, we think it could even become a useful accessory around the family home or for camping adventures.
The simple lamp design includes a single button for three different lighting settings, offering up to 6 hours of light at full output or 35 hours on the dimmest setting (15-percent output). Protected by a silicon disk, it can easily be placed on the ground without any risk or obstruction of light. Furthermore, the Nomad lamp can easily be suspended above a table or desk, or simply unhooked to transport anywhere just like a classic lantern. The separate solar charger can easily be affixed to walls without requiring tools, or even fastened to the metal frame of a tent by using straps. In addition the lamp can be charged with a USB plug for cloudy days or office use.
The solar lamp employs LED technology for a longer lifespan and has been design to resist shocks if dropped or bumped. This is achieved by a shock absorption ring that is placed at the base of the lamp to protect it in the case of an unexpected fall, while also increasing its adherence when placed on a flat surface. The makers chose to use eco-friendly materials such as ABS and recycled packaging with a minimum of ink used, to limit production pollution and offer a better result. The product's green credentials are further boosted with the use of 12 0.18 W high-output LEDs powered by a Li-ion battery .
The lamp will be available for the retail market from September 2012 and is estimated to cost €95 (US$125). The O'Sun team is also committed to distributing the lamp to developing countries through true NGO, government support and micro-credit organizations (with a sufficiently reduced price-tag).