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Hong Kong Company Develops Solar-Powered Lightbulb

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the works-best-at-night dept.

Power 222

hussain_mkj writes "A Hong Kong-based company, Nokero, has introduced what it claims is the world's first solar powered lightbulb. Nokero is trying to replace traditional kerosene lamps in developing countries with its solar-powered N100 LED lightbulbs. The bulb is about the same size as normal incandescent bulbs, and will shine for two hours when charged for a day. The company claims that the new bulb is five times as bright as a kerosene lamp and uses 1/200th the energy. It will cost $15 for one and $480 for 48."

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222 comments

Solar powered light bulb? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560824)

That's as ridiculous as screen door on a battle ship.

Re:Solar powered light bulb? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561284)

Eh, it's just full of useless seamen..

Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (3, Funny)

phantomcircuit (938963) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560826)

Seriously how many light bulbs to you have where there is sunlight hittinng the top of the bulb regularly?

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560844)

Per the tfa their thinking was that you would hang it outside during the day.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (1)

Alarindris (1253418) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560968)

Yeah, hang it under something. This is really, really dumb.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (1, Insightful)

skine (1524819) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561064)

Yes, because it's high noon from dawn till dusk, and everyone lives on the equator.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (2, Informative)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561516)

Hence that four angled panels on the top to catch some sun at any time of day.
This is not new and probably not even cheaper than the hand assembled devices being used now. What is new is being able to get it already assembled and in bulk.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (-1, Redundant)

skine (1524819) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561100)

Yes, because it's high noon from dawn till dusk, and everybody lives on the equator.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (2, Insightful)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561896)

if you bothered to RTFA you'd see that it has a hook to hang like a lantern. Thinking is to hang it from a branch or something.

Obviously if you're in a house you probably already have electric power or some other more reliable source of lighting

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560982)

Reading the article, and seeing the picture, might enlighten you.

As to whether it's any good, however, it seems that this is just PR for the company making them.

At $15 a "bulb," they are more expensive than what people in the developing countries will be able to afford. In fact, why even use lighting at night, when you can get up/go to bed with the sun. It's much cheaper.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (2, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561110)

Because during the day typically they're working trying to eek out enough to survive. And in the evening when it's too dark to work it's a great time to try and learn something. You know better oneself.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560984)

Duh, it's obvious that you just run the wires to the solar panels on the other side of the planet where there is sunlight. Sheesh!

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (5, Funny)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561070)

Seriously how many light bulbs to you have where there is sunlight hittinng the top of the bulb regularly?

I found some information on a phenomenon [wikipedia.org] that will ... illuminate you.

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561332)

Seriously how many light bulbs to you have where there is sunlight hittinng the top of the bulb regularly?

I found some information on a phenomenon [wikipedia.org] that will ... illuminate you.

I found some information on a structure [wikipedia.org] that will ... shade you.

Portable lamp (2, Informative)

LongearedBat (1665481) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561084)

During the day you hang it from the metal clip on a branch (with no foliage) or a string (like a washing line). Or, simply place it on a safe surface somewhere that catches the sun.

At night you either hang it from the metal clip or screw it in. By the picture, it looks like there is a black "on" button at the top that may work such that screwing it in further switches it on (would have to remove the clip though).

Re:Portable lamp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561746)

Or, simply place it on a safe surface somewhere that catches the sun.

Wouldn't it get stolen by the niggers?

Re:Solar Panels on the top of the bulb (2, Informative)

SudoGhost (1779150) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561558)

"Solar powered lightbulbs" Shit, growing up we just called those mirrors.

Cool (4, Interesting)

pieisgood (841871) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560836)

You can get the 48 light deal and setup a grid of lights to provide night time lighting for six hours and you won't have to pay the electricity bill.

But will anyone in the developing countries know or care about this?

Re:Cool (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560880)

People in developing countries don't give a fuck about 15 dollar light bulbs, or the kerosene they replace, since they can't afford that either.

Re:Cool (3, Funny)

new death barbie (240326) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560918)

People in developing countries aren't afraid of the dark.

Re:Cool (4, Interesting)

skine (1524819) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561096)

My great uncle drove down to Brazil about thirty years back, and most central American rural natives would drive without headlights at night. They felt that it actually improved their ability to see.

Re:Cool (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561320)

Goes some way to explaining why they're a 3rd world people.

Re:Cool (1)

Sowelu (713889) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561324)

Another big reason that people drive without headlights is that they believe it improves their gas mileage (after all, there's less to power, right?). I mean, it SEEMS obvious, and when gas is so expensive, why take chances?

Re:Cool (3, Informative)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561380)

It does, they found that requiring daytime running lights increased fuel consumption by something like 5%, not a lot but when you're counting pennies.

Re:Cool (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561366)

For the record, this no longer happens in Brazil.

Re:Cool (3, Informative)

Umuri (897961) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561442)

I'll bite the karma bullet on this, you're being relatively shortsighted and blind in your insinuation they are stupid.

It actually does improve your vision.
I'll give you a simple experiment. Go outside at night, shine a bright flashlight(halogen makes this work better) at the ground. stare at that flashlight for a good 5 minutes.
Now turn the stupid thing off, and wait 5 minutes.
Once your eyes adjust suddenly you

The light forces your eyes to restrict the light comming in, killing your darkvision. Yes it lets you see the small patch it illuminates, but seeing anything to either side or beyond that is much harder.
Compare that to the normal nightvision a person has on a decent night with a moon, and you can see a mile easy.

Yes, lights help when there's no moon, but if you have a moon, lighting destroys your night vision.

Re:Cool (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561578)

I'll bite the karma bullet on this, you're being relatively shortsighted and blind in your insinuation they are stupid.

When one assumes that everyone else is an asshole, it's usually they who are the asshole.

Re:Cool (2, Insightful)

PBoyUK (1591865) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561664)

They are being stupid, and your ridiculously obvious "experiment" does nothing to prove otherwise. It goes without saying that if you have no artificial light available that waiting until your eyes adjust to the darkness gives you better vision. The point is that it's better vision only in comparison to what you would have if you had no light at all. How you've managed to take this answer and extrapolate it to night-vision being superior to a source of light in the darkness is stupefying. If you truly believed this wasn't stupid, tell me, do you drive at night without your headlights on? No? Thought not. As to the argument of counting the pennies saved on petrol - that works right up until the first time you hit a tree because you couldn't see properly. The only short-sighted thing here is these morons driving so dangerously and your leap to defend them from deserved criticism.

What other absurd superstitious beliefs of technologically backwards societies do you feel compelled to defend out of some political correctness gone awry? Voodoo? Condoms being responsible for AIDS? AIDS drugs being a plot of the "white man" to test out dangerous substances and keep their society down?

Romanticising and defending these cultures as somehow more "natural" than our own, is ridiculous, and I feel inclined to remind anyone bent to do so that the second they need their modern society for something, they'll jump straight back into it, romanticism be damned.

Re:Cool (3, Interesting)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561770)

Can you, with normal headlights on, see a pedestrian a kilometer away?

On a night of full moon, I can see them pretty well with lights off. I may not spot the difference between a slick of oil and a pothole a meter away, but I can pretty well see the curve of the road, the bigger obstacles, very far buildings and so on. The moment I switch headlights on my vision is limited to ~100m. And the moment a car with headlights on approaches from behind a hill/bump (or the asshole doesn't switch to passing beam) my view range is pretty much zero, for the duration of the encounter and about 10s afterwards.

Re:Cool (1)

PBoyUK (1591865) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561914)

I can indeed. Because intelligent people around here in the countryside who walk their dogs at night wear bright clothing, or a reflective sash - or even jacket. It's extremely obvious that they're there, because they're glowing.

And the side effect: since my lights are on, they know I'm there too.

Re:Cool (2, Insightful)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561774)

stare at that flashlight for a good 5 minutes.
Now turn the stupid thing off, and wait 5 minutes. [...] Yes, lights help when there's no moon, but if you have a moon, lighting destroys your night vision.

The trick is to leave the lights on. Then you don't need night vision.

And your missing the other function of the lights - to be seen by other drivers.

Re:Cool (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561598)

Depending on the phase of the moon, that could very well be true. I've noticed that on a full moon, I could much further out including silhouettes of every obstacle. With headlights however, the level of detail, color, and clarity is superior...but only where it shines. Because my pupils are now constricted, I no longer see anything else in the dark (where the light is not shining).

Re:Cool (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561790)

With headlights however, the level of detail, color, and clarity is superior...but only where it shines. Because my pupils are now constricted, I no longer see anything else in the dark (where the light is not shining).

Call me old fashioned, but the areas illuminated by correctly fitted headlamps correspond quite closely with where you should be looking while you're driving.

Re:Cool (1)

kcelery (410487) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561318)

The manufacturer of the light bulb might think the sun is an unlimited, universal energy source. Unfortunately, in big cities, only the rich could afford the sun. For ordinary people, there is not enough sun light to sustain the growth of a health plant at their windows.

Re:Cool (2, Insightful)

keeboo (724305) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561072)

But will anyone in the developing countries know or care about this?

The problem is what does mean a "developing country"?
Really, people apply that term from places with reasonable life quality (but considered "developing" for some reason) to places lacking a funcional government and where famine is widespread.

In the not-so "developing countries" people won't care since - unless it's a desolate area - even the poorest houses are connected to the power grid.

Replacement term for 3rd world (4, Informative)

xzvf (924443) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561162)

Diplomats adjust terms to keep from offending nations where people have little income and limited freedom. During the cold war there was the 1st world (NATO, neutral western Europe, Japan), 2nd world (Warsaw Pact), and 3rd world (everyone else). Late in the cold war, 3rd world was replaced by developing nations to counter the Soviet goal of creating Communist revolutions, and indicate the new US policy economic development (replacing the anti-Communist strongman policy). After the cold war saw the creating of the emerging economies (BRIC {Brazil, Russia [after deflating the CIA myth of a Soviet economy as large as the US], India, and China}, Asian tigers {primarily South Korea and Singapore} and former purgatory countries {South Africa [Aparthid] and Israel [peace treaty with Egypt]. The former 1st world is now called developed. So now we have Developed, Emerging and Developing. Of course people closer to the academic world will know the newest buzzwords.

Re:Replacement term for 3rd world (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561222)

Diplomats adjust terms to keep from offending nations where people have little income and limited freedom.

And what country is that where you live, xzvf, where you have "unlimited freedom"? USA? Europe?

C'mon, it is exactly in a "developing" country where you will find real freedom.

Re:Replacement term for 3rd world (2, Insightful)

grcumb (781340) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561536)

C'mon, it is exactly in a "developing" country where you will find real freedom.

If by freedom, you mean freedom from government services, including police, education and health services, then yes, you'd be right.

I live in a country with a lot of freedom as defined above. Trust me, the malaria, dengue, lack of dentists and occasional outbreaks of mob violence make it a taste that few would willingly acquire, given the choice....

Re:Replacement term for 3rd world (2, Funny)

wisdom_brewing (557753) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561734)

Jeremy Clarkson:

"There are two ways a truly civilised and advanced nation can be defined. One, it has a fleet of nuclear submarines, and two, it does not have the death penalty. That leaves you with France and Britain. And that’s about right. "

Ikea buy one give one (2, Informative)

xzvf (924443) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561086)

Ikea was selling a $19.99 solar reading lamp that if you bought one, one was sent to Africa. Even if they didn't make a profit, that means the light cost significantly less than $15 dollars individually. Plus the LED is bright and lasts six hours easily.

Re:Cool (5, Interesting)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561274)

Developing countries are way ahead of the "green" curve because:
1) Electricity is expensive
2) Electricity isn't that reliable.

On my recent trip to India I was quite surprised, especially out in Sikkim. Even though the area is very 'poor' (by American standards) almost everyone had florescent lights. We stayed on Yangsum Farm [yangsumfarm.com]. The guy had a solar array. WWII sub batteries for backup. He was in process of building an entire passive 'off the grid' building.

Every single hotel room I stayed in had a slot for the key. You walked in, put the key in the slot and the power came on to the room. If you took the key, you lost power. It was annoying trying to charge stuff, but how many times to people leave their rooms in the USA and leave a TV on, some lights, etc?

So yes, developing countries know about this and they'll most likely make use of it long before anyone in the USA even cares.

Re:Cool (1)

ibsteve2u (1184603) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561484)

Every single hotel room I stayed in had a slot for the key. You walked in, put the key in the slot and the power came on to the room. If you took the key, you lost power.

Don't have to go clear to India...that is popular in island nations, too, where the cost of shipping fuel to power plants is expensive. Like down in the Dominican Republic.

(Although it is my thought that they could have just capitalized on the "Drinks Included!" feature of their resorts and routed the urinal flow through generators.)

Re:Cool (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561658)

They have those in Shanghai too and perhaps all of China. Electricity is expensive, especially when you're not paying a separate electric bill for a hotel. They earn a profit by saving money.

Re:Cool (2, Insightful)

wisdom_brewing (557753) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561758)

Every single hotel room I stayed in had a slot for the key. You walked in, put the key in the slot and the power came on to the room. If you took the key, you lost power. It was annoying trying to charge stuff, but how many times to people leave their rooms in the USA and leave a TV on, some lights, etc?

You know you can put a business card/membership card/whatever in there and it works?

Most hotels in the UK have this as well now, even those costing USD 500 a night for the cheapest room...

Re:Cool (1)

grcumb (781340) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561512)

You can get the 48 light deal and setup a grid of lights to provide night time lighting for six hours and you won't have to pay the electricity bill.

But will anyone in the developing countries know or care about this?

Er, yes and yes.

I live in the developing world and a family to whom I'm quite close have two solar-powered lanterns already. They use them for illumination as well as to light their roadside shop in the evenings. The lamp also has a plug for mobile phones and a mini-USB connector. Its solar panels are significantly larger than this light bulb's and they're all on one side, so you can use them all at once.

The lanterns are pretty expensive by local standards - almost a week's pay. But they're much cheaper to own and way more effective at lighting than kerosene (which is the 'other' means of illumination around here) that everyone wants one. Demand is high enough that a local micro-finance agency just bought a container-load of them to sell.

These lightbulbs, frankly, are kind of old news. Neat, but only riffing on stuff we've been doing for a couple/three years now....

I'll be impressed when... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560848)

the damn light bulb can charge itself continuously from its own light output!

Re:I'll be impressed when... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560876)

But don't let it get out of control because more input means more output and that might never end.

Not a first, I think... (4, Interesting)

blankinthefill (665181) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560852)

Well, considering that these: http://www.siliconsolar.com/solar-garden-lights.html [siliconsolar.com], have been around for many years, I think 'first' is a bit of a stretch. They may have made them CHEAPER, and longer lasting, or more useful, but certainly not FIRST.

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560944)

Also I did hear about solar powered kerosene lamp replacements being deployed in West Africa about three years or more ago. I thought they were actually cheaper than this although some assembly is required.

Re:Not a first, I think... (3, Informative)

besalope (1186101) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561012)

In my International Management course we learned about an initiative to work with 3rd world countries to help provide 1 Watt Solar Panels, rechargeable batteries, and LED arrays as kerosene replacements. The systems only cost about $100 at the time (2 years or so ago) and it paid itself off in about 5 months due to the price of kerosene.

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560948)

In fact I am pretty sure I have seen lanterns exactly like this in the shops. Solar panel on top. Batteries and LED lights. You hang it in the sun during the day.

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

WeatherGod (1726770) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561000)

That didn't stop Microsoft from implying that Windows 7 was the first OS with all sorts of things, why should it stop these people?

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561056)

Ever used those things? They suck. It's basically a single, low-power LED rigged up to a rechargeable battery. They're generally designed to illuminate a walkway at night (VERY little light output - just enough to see by), and all the ones I've used are barely able to do that.

A light bulb suggests that there's actually a meaningful amount of light. The little garden lights don't compare, even if the concept is similar.

As an aside, the garden lights can be had for about five bucks each (in a pack of six or eight) at most home improvement stores... well below the $10/pc@4doz mentioned in TFS.

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561108)

Ever used those things? They suck. It's basically a single, low-power LED rigged up to a rechargeable battery. They're generally designed to illuminate a walkway at night (VERY little light output - just enough to see by), and all the ones I've used are barely able to do that.

They do what they are intended for. Double the solar panel area, increase the light output, switch the lights so you can use them for a couple of hours at a time. Now you have a product which may be the difference between an African kid being able to study at night, or not. More light would be good but some is better than nothing at all.

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

Cheerio Boy (82178) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561236)

Actually if we're talking solar path lights some of them are actually fairly bright and last the entire evening using two LEDs and two batteries.

In theory you could take a bunch of them without the ground spikes, punch holes in a tin roof, and install them so the solar panel is on the outside while the light is on the inside. (Sealing the roof for leaks obviously)

Do that with enough of them and you have bright enough light to read at night.

And since you can buy a brace of them cheap at local big-box stores the manufacturing cost for these has got to be pretty inexpensive. Buying a bunch of these would be a considerably cheaper solution than this new "lightbulb".

Re:Not a first, I think... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561300)

Yeah reading this article I am plotting a project for next weekend. I have an old solar panel intended to boost a car battery when the car is not in use. I have an old six volt gel cell battery okay for float charging. I can buy a single white high intensity LED.

The problem is that when I go into the garage at night it is too dark to see where I am going. The florescent light takes too long to start but a little light which is always on will make all the difference. The idea would be to mount the solar cell on the roof and run a cable through an existing gap in the steel. Maybe I will create a circuit which cuts the LED off during the day.

New? (1, Redundant)

Dan East (318230) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560858)

Isn't this the exact same thing as the exterior lights people stick in the ground along their steps and walkways around their homes? They charge in the daytime and come on at night for a couple hours. This is just a slightly different form factor is all.

And I don't think it is accurate calling it a "lightbulb". It is a "bulb-shaped" electronic device, but it is not a bulb.

Re:New? (3, Interesting)

dwillden (521345) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561002)

Except those LED lights ($3.99 at Walmart) tend to shine for six hours or more, not a paltry 2 hours. I have a couple single LED lights among the set in my yard that will often still be lit when I leave for work in the morning.

I have one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560860)

I already have one. It's called a MIRROR.

Re:I have one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560906)

You know, if you put a big enough mirror far enough out in space, you could provide daylight at all times.

Re:I have one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561200)

You could probably fry some ants too!

Two Hours? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560864)

I'd rather have the same brightness as a kerosene lamp for ten hours than five times the brightness for only two hours.

Bulbs don't consume a lot of power ? (0, Redundant)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560886)

Seriously, how about solar powered other things like water boilers that everyone needs in developing nations. The bulb takes 1 day to light up for 2 hrs which does not seem like a lot and that too depends on the weather. Does it hold it's charge for long? I think bulbs are cheap anyway, are not power-consuming monsters and GE already has cheaper and relatively more energy efficient bulbs out. It could be used in disaster-struck areas, that is a good point, but I have seen people come out with generator trucks for such areas and/or people getting rescued and taken to an area with power too. But it could still make things easier and we could soon see food packets with solar bulbs dropped in such areas :).

Unfortunately... (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560950)

$15 is likely a month or more salary in most undeveloped countries.

Re:Unfortunately... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560986)

That doesn't matter when the US and other countries subsidize developing countries.

Re:Unfortunately... (1)

iPhr0stByt3 (1278060) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560996)

I was thinking the same thing. But I suppose if you are one of the wealthier people where $15 is only a weeks salary, you might consider this. Afterall, you won't get electrical lighting any other way. But then again, it's probably still much more affordable to go with kerosene.

Re:Unfortunately... (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561008)

not to mention you can already by garden lights that do exactly this.i think this whole story is fucking stupid.

Re:Unfortunately... (4, Insightful)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561158)

This isn't meant for third world applications, despite the company propaganda. It is meant for North Americans, for patio lanterns and camping and such. There's no reason that a third world solar powered bulb would be shaped like [com.com] a North American bulb [bulbhalogen.com], complete with screw threads moulded into the plastic on the top. It's meant to be cute. Third world doesn't buy cute, they buy functional. North America buys cute.

From Nokero's website:

Coleman lanterns are popular, but the Nokero is like a solar Coleman lantern powered by sunlight rather than gas lantern technology, so it can also be used for recreational purposes. It can provide emergency light during or after natural disasters, it can be an outdoor recreation and camping lantern, or it can be used in and around outdoor patios.

Re:Unfortunately... (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561500)

Apparently the original poster got it wrong.. "Nokero is trying to replace traditional kerosene lamps in developing countries with its solar-powered N100 LED lightbulbs."

Re:Unfortunately... (1)

kcelery (410487) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561340)

a $15 light bulb is something you have to hire a body guard to secure if you hang it in the open.

Oblig. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560958)

Now that's what I call a bright idea!

Amazing technological advancements (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32560974)

I'm still awestruck by the novelty of this invention. Who would have ever thought to combine a solar cell, light bulb and battery to produce a solar powered lantern. I mean its not like you could just waltz into your local hardware store and...oh wait..

"The LEDs are meant to last 50,000 to 100,000 hours, and the solar panels are rated to last 10 years. The life of the N100 is basically 5 to 10 years, according to Nokero representative"

Leave it to the "Nokero representative" to conviently skip over the part about where they disclose how often the batteries need to be replaced.

batteries (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561174)

Just what I was wondering. How long will the battery last? 2 years? Miserable battery life is my number 1 complaint about UPSes.

One day of charging = two hours of light (2, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 3 years ago | (#32560988)

I have had some experience with kerosene.

But this lamp seems least useful where it would be most needed - where days are short, nights are long, and the weather uncooperative.

Re:One day of charging = two hours of light (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561028)

Agreed.. my first thought was instead of this.. why not those windup LED jobs.. I bet theyre about the same price and as long as you can wind, you can have light...

Re:One day of charging = two hours of light (1)

Cylix (55374) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561050)

My first thought was the kerosene lamp is also a bit more rugged. They can generally take a few hits, dirt and even a good bit of rust. Conversely, I get a sense the solar powered replacement may break with a few days of usage.

Bogolights are also good ... (5, Informative)

jrifkin (100192) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561074)

I have owned a couple of Boglights for a few years now and they've been solidly reliable. They can last up to 6 hours on a days charge, they work as both a flashlight and an area light, they give 6 levels of light, and are designed for developing countries. However, they cost twice as much, $30 a light. This page has a lot of technical information about them, http://www.bogolight.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=BOGO-BUYONESN2&Show=TechSpecs [bogolight.com]

Re:Bogolights are also good ... (2, Insightful)

gninnor (792931) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561242)

They look better thought out than the light bulb shaped N100 LED bulbs. The solar panels on the N100 are pointed in such a way that only half of them could be put even approximately facing the sun and are pointed down at a steep angle if hung up to charge. I would rather be able to aim the solar panel. Over all it looks like the N100 looks like it was designed by marketing, those Boglights seem a bit better thought out.

Isn't a solar powered light bulb called ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561170)

a window?

infinite energy! (2, Funny)

oddTodd123 (1806894) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561306)

Wait, since these bulbs also give off light, if you use the light from the solar-charged bulb to charge more bulbs, you can then use those bulbs when the first one goes out, and use the second round of bulbs to re-charge the first round, ad infinitum! Suck on that von Mayer [wikipedia.org]!

Wow, just wow (1)

codeButcher (223668) | more than 3 years ago | (#32561488)

Gotta love slashdot. Light bulbs running on sunlight! Transistors working when they're off! Lying about the lie detector!

What next? Honest politicians? Transparent intelligence organisations? Intelligent news consumers?

Wait Wait! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561554)

I heard this one before, it's by the same inventors of the submarine screen-door right?

15$? Lots of money for the poor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32561780)

I mean come on: 15$ is more than many people for whom this is targeted make in a whole month. It might be nice tech and all, but the ones that would profit most from this won't have the the money. Looks more like a 'feel good' product for people in the rich developed world.

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