It's really annoying when you're out and about and your cell phone runs out of battery. There are plenty of chargers and battery packs you can carry around with you, just in case, but they're often quite bulky and irritating.
This is why we love Ray, it's a solar powered charger for all kinds of electrical gadgets AND it's small and super compact. Ray has a powerful suction cup so you can attach it to any kinds of windows to get the most sunlight shining on it.
Available from Quirky for $39.99.
These slim, sturdy and wooden iPad covers from Root Cases are ideal for anyone who prefers the natural look to anything too fake and shiny.
They come in walnut and bamboo and house your iPad in a sturdy shell and act as a handy stand.
Available from Root Cases for $79.
This clever tumbler idea from designers Jang Jin-Hee and Min-Jeong was born out of a mission to make people reconsider how much they use disposable cups. Just think how much material is being wasted on a daily basis as people all over the world take their lattes to go...
The tumbler isn't just a more eco-friendly way to drink your coffee, but it's also been built specially with Starbucks in mind so that when people order a coffee from their local shop a sensor is activated which slowly lights up more parts of the tumbler! What a nice little addition and a great way to encourage people to keep using it after the novelty wears off.
[Via Yanko Design]
A scary amount of waste goes into landfill sites from our offices. Most of this waste should probably have been sorted and recycled, but gets thrown into the trash along with everything else.
We get through a crazy amount of printer ink cartridges even though most of the time they're not empty! So, designers Kim Jungwoo, Kim Yoonsang and Park Eunsung decided to use them in other ways so they wouldn't go to waste. Their first project has been the ReLife Ink, which sees all kinds of old ink cartridges being used as handy stamps. What a good idea!
[Via Yanko Design]
It seems that there are solar powered versions of everything these days, from gadgets, cars, homes, even bikinis!
However, it can be hard to "make" something solar powered, it takes time and money and there's also no guarantee that the way the solar cells are created in the first place is as eco-friendly as possible.
This is why a team of researchers at the University of Alberta have come up with the innovative idea of creating solar cells by simply spraying them onto an object in order to make it solar powered. Apparently the cells are super thin and can be sprayed, rolled onto or even sewn into any kind of material.
The researchers are still testing the new method, but if it proves to be successful it could well revolutionize the way we use solar energy in the future.
Instead the batteries in the Renew are charged with solar energy whilst they sit in the dispenser. Then a fully charged one can be popped out of the bottom and once used up added back into the top to be recharged again.
It's a practical and economical idea which I'm surprised hasn't already been made!
Scientists are currently working on creating artificial leaves that one day we may be able to use to power our homes.
The leaves will probably be made from plastic or silicone and embedded with light absorbing materials that produce fuel from sunlight, water and carbon dioxide, just like real leaves.
This cute messenger bag from Diffus Design may look just like any other purse with a shiny quilting effect, but it's actually covered in lots of tiny solar panels.
The team behind the creation have added 100 miniaturized monocrystalline silicone "sequins" to the design of the bag, so that it not only looks distinct, but it can use solar energy to recharge your cell phone. Any of the energy that isn't used during the day is stored in a special battery which then adds a glow to the bag at night to make things easier to find!
This is a very impressive idea from online giant Google, which acquired a site in Hamina, Finland for one of its new data centers and came up with an innovative way to cool down the huge servers that heat up very quickly.
Due to the center's location by the coast, Google decided to pump sea water into underground sea tunnels that were already in place and run it through heat exchangers, using direct exchange the server load heat is cooled down and then the water is pumped back into the sea at the right temperature.
Granted most of us won't be tasked with thinking of a way to cool down data centers in the near future but this is an inspiring lesson in thinking outside of the box and looking at what nature has to offer before creating something artificial ourselves.
It's hard to power your gadgets when you're at the beach or by the pool, which is one of the many reasons this solar powered bikini designed by Andrew Schneider is a fantastic concept.
The solar powered bikini is part of Scheider's iDrink line and powers electrical devices with the USB cable attached to the garment.
It's not ready to be launched yet and to be honest the design probably could do with a little tweaking from an aesthetic point of view as it still looks very sci-fi. But, it's good to see an inventor take advantage of the public's love for sunbathing and turn it into valuable energy.
Via Inventor Spot.