In some parts of our world, people are not connected to a power grid and therefore no access to electrical lighting. The people from the GravityLight Foundation are trying to help to solve this problem with a smart solution.
If you’re living in such an area, your day and your productivity basically end with nightfall. When you can’t see a thing, you can’t work, you can’t cook, and kids can’t learn among nearly everything else you and me do in the evening hours.
For some time people have been making use of kerosene lamps to have some sort of light in the night at least. These kerosene lights are expensive, polluting and dangerous to the people who use them though.
Generating light without a battery
A good alternative is the GravityLight lamp. This well-designed device illuminates a room just with the power of gravity, and it requires no other source of energy and no battery. It’s free to use and has no adverse side-effects whatsoever. It’s not a full room illumination but it’s still more than what the kerosene light alternative offers.
How does that work?
The GravityLight leverages a combination of kinetic and potential energy to run. You fill a bag with sand or rocks as weight and then attach it to a pulley system that slowly powers a generator while gravity pulls the weight down.
The solution works instantly, and one cycle can provide about 20 minutes of lighting. You require no batteries, so there’s no pollution and no need to charge anything up beforehand. The system is self-sustained and once provided, there are no running costs to this.
What does the GravityLight Foundation do?
The GravityLight Foundation aims to create local jobs and develop not only staff but whole communities as the GravityLight devices are distributed. They are not undermining local economy by just giving the devices away for free, and that is very important too.
They work with UK-based company Deciwatt Ltd, who develop off-grid, clean energy solutions and partners in Kenya. The trading subsidiary is GravityLight Kenya Ltd, and they work on marketing the solution as well as feeding demand information back to developing parties.
GravityLight is an excellent example of making good use of green tech to support people who can really use some innovation in their lives. If you want to help them distributing clean and affordable lighting to more communities, you can donate via payment provider Charity Checkout.
YouTube: Lights without Battery (GravityLight)
Photo credit: GravityLight