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Grab some shade and charge your tech under a Solar Bench


July 5, 2012

Ontario's Green Sun Rising has launched the Solar Bench, a picnic bench and table topped by PV panels to help top up device batteries while users enjoy some shade

Ontario's Green Sun Rising has launched the Solar Bench, a picnic bench and table topped by PV panels to help top up device batteries while users enjoy some shade

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Thanks to widespread free Wi-Fi, when the sun shines (which is quite often) I can head outdoors to work. When it gets too bright to view the laptop screen in the open, there's usually a tree-shaded picnic bench available at the lakeside where I can comfortably type away to my heart's content ... until my battery dies. Were I fortunate enough to find a Solar Bench from Ontario's Green Sun Rising, limited battery life might not be such a concern. The table and twin bench structure is topped by a photovoltaic paneled roof that not only provides some welcome relief from a blazing mid-day sun, but can juice up smartphone or mobile computing devices, too.

Having a design reminiscent of the company's Solar Bikeport announced earlier in the year - that's reportedly capable of the off-grid top-up of an e-bike's battery pack during the course of a sunny day - the Solar Bench's all-aluminum frame has a PV panel canopy sporting three flexible, thin-film solar modules with a claimed output of over 200W. Instead of bike supports, weather-proofed cedar wood benches and a table top sit beneath the corrugated roof.

There's a built-in storage battery for those rare occasions when the sun just refuses to come out, and 2W LED lamps fitted underneath the roof for continued working when night falls.

An example installation has been set up outside the company's Renewable Energy Technology Center in Windsor, Ontario. Green Sun Rising has confirmed that the Solar Bench is currently for sale but is remaining tight-lipped on pricing, encouraging potential customers to get in touch for details.

Source: Green Sun Rising

About the Author
Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag. All articles by Paul Ridden

I have 2 problems with that

What happens when temperatures touch 45 degrees C in countries like ours ? No one can dare use this in such extreme heat . This can only be useful in sunny winter days, which is about 1 month out of 12

How do u protect this from theft and vandalism at night ?

Atul Malhotra

45 degrees C would be 113 degrees Fahrenheit. I don't think I would be spending much time outdoors if I could help it. On the other hand though, Make the canopy larger for more shade (and more power) would help, if it was that hot.

Theft is not a problem. Just pour a concrete slab, and anchor it down, or use earth anchors and chain it. If it was me, I would just use two earth anchors (one for each runner) cut a slot in the runner for the looped head to pass through (like a button hole) and padlock it to the earth anchor. It could not be removed with out cutting tools.

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