Your own wearable microgrid?
A new clothing line offers a coat and dress equipped with solar panels that can keep your mobile phone charged - so long as there’s enough sunlight.
The "Wearable Solar" coat shown below is one of two photovoltaic-loaded civvies (the other's a sleeveless dress) developed by Dutch innovation-funding firm Gelderland Valoriseert andPauline van Dongen , whose neo-clothing line also includes 3-D printed shoes and vestments that look like erosion . The jet-black accoutrements are equipped with panels and sleeves sheltering up to 48 removable solar cells; when worn out in bright daylight, the makers of "Wearable Solar" claim, the items can restore up to half of a phone's battery life in one hour.
Turning humans into their snazzy, walking energy generators was initially an idea aimed at attendees of large music festivals, who rely on phones to locate roaming friends and tucked-away stages.
This in an interesting development in solar technology, creating wearable solar panels that can be used to power small electronics. While the first few articles of clothing look more like a superhero’s costume than a designer coat or dress, the technology behind them is advancing fast enough that we could soon see solar-powered clothes that look like anything else you might buy off the rack.
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