Indoor Solar Power
Breaking free from batteries and plugs, a future of rechargeable gadgets comes into focus.
Remember those solar-powered calculators from your youth? The ones you could take out of your backpack, and it always “just worked?”
This article brought back those memories and got me wondering: why don’t I see those anymore? Why didn’t solar-powered gadgets catch on?
Turns out, those calculators were just the tip of a solar-powered iceberg that never quite broke the surface. Back then, indoor light was like a technological desert for solar cells, barely squeezing out enough juice to power a basic calculator, let alone our smartphone-hungry lives.
Well, the game has changed. A new generation of solar cells, known as a “dye-sensitized solar cell,” are lightweight, bendable, cheap to manufacture, and ready to revolutionize how we power our gadgets.
By mimicking photosynthesis in plants, these flexible sheets let headphones charge under a windowsill, keyboards ditch the cable forever, electronic door locks never need a battery change, and even remote controls come back to life after a quick sunbath.
Hopefully, soon, we will be taking our phones out of our pockets and not even looking at how much charge it has left.