solar power

A Home Art Installation That Doubles As A Rooftop Solar Panel Monitor

Installing a set of solar panels on the roof of your home can lead to significant savings when your monthly power bill arrives. But how do you know how well they’re performing in between without watching the meter like a hawk? With this innocuous looking piece of art that doubles as a home energy monitor.


This Plane Will Circle The World Using Only The Power Of The Sun

You’ve probably heard about the ambitious, almost impossible-sounding project to fly a solar-powered plane around the world without refueling. But now, about a year before the voyage is scheduled to begin, you get your first look at the plane itself. It’s unlike any plane you’ve seen before.


Cheap, Colourful Solar-Powered Watches That Require No Maintenance

Based on the same technology that lets Citizen’s high-end watches with Eco-Drive stay perpetually charged by the sun, Q&Q (a company founded almost 40 years ago as part of Citizen) has finally made its once Japan-only SolarSmile watches available internationally. So for just $40 — with free shipping — you can get a simple timepiece that never needs winding, charging, or a new battery.


New Light-Emitting Solar Cells Could Be Used As Smartphone Displays

In the future, the glass that coats our skyscrapers could also serve as the power plant that keeps the lights on. This is not news. However, with an amazing new material being developed in Singapore, that same glass could also turn your city’s windows into skyscraper-sized displays.


This Table Charges Your Devices By Mimicking Photosynthesis

It’s rare to find a designer who also knows their way around an electrical diagram, but Marjan van Aubel is one of them. The energy-minded designer is back with a new piece, Current Table, which uses dye solar cells to absorb energy and charge your devices.


The World's Largest Solar Plant Started Creating Electricity Today

Take 300,000 computer-controlled mirrors, each 2m high and 3m wide. Control them with computers to focus the sun’s light to the top of 140m towers, where water is turned into steam to power turbines. Bingo: you have the world’s biggest solar power plant, the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System.


The Sun Is Your Zippo With This Solar-Powered Lighter

Perfect for smokers who live in windy cities, this compact parabolic reflector lets you harness the sun as your own personal lighter — one that’s immune to even the strongest winds.


Ford's New Solar-Powered Electric Car Is Its Own Rolling Power Grid

Electric cars have come a long way in the past decade or two, but one glaring problem remains: you have to charge the dang things. What do you do when there aren’t enough charging stations (and there aren’t)? If you’re Ford, you build a car that charges itself.


This Solar Charging Tent Means You Can Never Get Away From Gadgets

Camping used to be all about getting away from the clutter of our increasingly connected lives. But then electronic devices became “mobile”, which it turns out means “magnetically attracted to our thumbs,” and solar charging was a necessity. Now Eddie Bauer (the company) is making a tent with a built in solar charger, and Eddie Bauer (the badarse) is probably screaming obscenities in his grave.


How To Survive An Uninterrupted 72-Hour-Long Flight Simulation

Methods for staying awake during a long haul get pretty tired. Seriously, you can only slap yourself in the face so many times. So when Bertrand Piccard needed to figure out how to stay alert during a 72-hour-long test in a flight simulator this week, he got creative.