Ever wished you could harness all that energy your kids use when running round playing games. Well, eight Harvard alumni have found away that will allow you to do just that! They have managed to create a special football that harnesses the kinetic energy created when a football is kicked and use it to light an LED lamp. After only 30 minutes of play the ball harnesses enough energy to keep the LED lamp running for 3 hours.
- The football, named the SOCCKET, features a pendulum, which moves whilst the ball is in use. The pendulum movement gathers kinetic energy, which is transferred to a generator. The energy created is then stored up in a rechargeable battery. The ball can then be connected to a small LED light so that the power stored can be used to illuminate the lamp.
- The ball has been designed for families on low-incomes who live in areas where there is little to no lighting available such as areas off grid. Now, with the help of this technology, families who live in the remotest areas can have lighting, which requires no external power.
- The Football weighs only one ounce more than a usual football so is still easy to use. It is made from deflation-proof, water-resistant EVA foam and can therefore take much use, without having to worry about keeping it away from water or having to re-inflate it.
- The football not only gives families a light, but it encourages health and fitness within the communities, playing football keeps the user fit, and can offer a chance for children to play together. So it not only gives light it can bring children and adults alike together to play football.
Creating sustainable lighting for areas of the world where there is no grid electricity available is a challenge that is being tackled in various ways. The majority of lighting created features LED lights and some form of moveable parts, which gather the kinetic energy produced. The LEDs are chosen so that the designers can take advantage of their low energy consumption, bright light output and durability. Also LEDs have a long life span therefore the lights will last a long time, essential in hard to reach remote places. Philips have created an Off Grid Lighting scheme which gives the remotest places lighting ranging from home lamps to street lighting.
These new self powered lighting systems, give everyone an equal chance to have reliable lighting which improves quality of life dramatically. The sustainable light sources also allows user to have consistent lighting without generating large electricity bills, or having to use dangerous lighting fuels in areas where there is no grid electricity. These sustainably powered devices could lead the ways to in the future having completely sustainable energy sources in every home.