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Versatile solar Pebble looks to replace dependence on kerosene

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April 8, 2010

Plus Minus' Solar Pebble rechargeable lamp

Plus Minus' Solar Pebble rechargeable lamp

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Kerosene can be nasty stuff. Kerosene lanterns in particular can lead to fires, explosions, asphyxiation, and toxic fumes. In some of the world’s poorest regions, unfortunately, kerosene lanterns are the standard form of nighttime lighting. The folks over at England’s Plus Minus Solar tell us that every 20 seconds, someone is killed by such a device. That’s why Plus Minus has developed a solar-powered light called the Solar Pebble, that is targeted for humanitarian use in sub-Saharan Africa... or for patio use in suburban London.

The rain- and dust-proof LED Solar Pebble is powered by batteries that are charged by a small-but-efficient 6-volt solar panel. One 12-hour charge can light a room for an entire day and a ratchet handle allows the Pebble to be placed at the optimum solar-gathering and/or light-providing angle. It has built-in strap slots, so it can easily be carried, plus it can charge cell phones and other mobile devices.

Plus Minus' Solar Pebble rechargeable lamp

Not only is the Solar Pebble cleaner than kerosene, but it’s also cheaper. Apparently the product should cost less than one-tenth what African villagers are annually spending on kerosene. Plus Minus hopes to launch the Solar Pebble in Uganda this June or July, funded by sales of the product at home in the UK - it could also be just the thing for campers and festival-goers. No word on price yet, other than that it should be under £30 (about US$46).

Via Inhabitat.

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
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6 Comments

This makes you wonder why one would invest in a company like

Sunrise Solar when it's still a penny stock.

srmorb
9th April, 2010 @ 07:06 am PDT

Thanks for the information. I always enjoy reading about technology for the third world. So far I would still rate the Kiran D. Light as the best designed solar lantern. At $15.00 US it is affordable enough for me to buy and give away several.

ca_writer_jan
9th April, 2010 @ 09:35 am PDT

I'm puzzled. Contrary to what you say blue LEDs were, in fact, very difficult to produce and it took years of research. The Japanese engineer who did it became a celebrity and now works (I believe) in the US. At the time the blue LED was first produced, green LEDs already existed. Google searches will bring up a wealth of supporting material. This article has gotten something very wrong.

Article from 1995, 15 years ago:

ABSTRACT: Very bright blue light emitting diodes (LED's) have recently been

developed and made commercially available by Nichia Chemical in Japan.

Efficient red, yellow and green LED's already exist, and are used in

displays such as in the Tokyo subway. However with these existing LED's

full color displays were not possible. The newly developed blue LED's fill

this gap.

digadigado
9th April, 2010 @ 09:44 am PDT

I screwed up. My prior post was for the green LED, not the LED lantern. Sorry!

digadigado
9th April, 2010 @ 09:45 am PDT

What is the equivalent in kerosene needed to manufacture this technological wonder? It's a safe bet that a kerosene lamp is cheaper to acquire and own over its life cycle than the solar Pebble. How many months before the rechargeable battery dies and one has to throw it away?

Facebook User
19th May, 2010 @ 04:14 pm PDT

It's situation like the Gulf Tradgedy that will bring people to seethe use

in new sources of energy such as this so;ar lantern.

Thanks to British Petroleum industries oriented towards

Turbine Wind Generators

Solar Generators and Appliances

Making renewable feul from sources such as rice stalk

Is begininng to look sensible.

Powered g

Facebook User
30th May, 2010 @ 02:32 am PDT
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