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Voltaic (makers solar bags) have a DIY section filled with projects and resources for solar powered goodness – here are couple recent ones I thought were interesting…

Solar-Tracker-235X235

Solar trackers can increase power generated by a solar panel by orienting the panel towards the sun throughout the day. This decreases the amount (and cost) of PV required to generate a given amount of power. While we mainly see trackers implemented on utility-scale systems, there has been an explosion of small-scale tracker prototypes online


Bicycle-Rack-235X235

New DIY Solar Bicycle Rack – Two friends making a cross-country bike trip built out a nice solar bicycle rack. They’re fund raising for cancer research and will be using smart phones to make updates throughout the trip. The kits uses an old backpack shell (free) as the to secure the panels, 3 1.5 Watt 6 Volt solar panels, 1 Mini USB Circuit Box and 1 USB Battery Pack V11.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. mpechner says:

    The site that sells the solar tracker has some cool stuff.
    http://www.mtmscientific.com/
    Check them out.

  2. denamn says:

    I am a big fan of DIY solar energy, but what is solar energy used for with a bicycle? Is it to power a radio, a flashlight, or perhaps a storage battery for later use while camping?

  3. len says:

    Nice use of solar panels. denman… ya, I think they are using the small panels to power devices such as phones and recharging cameras etc… Anything that can accept DC voltage can be directly hooked up to the panels. For the cell phones, I think they must have a mini power inverter in the bags to convert from DC to AC. Devices such as phones don’t need a lot of power… the perfect application. http://www.green-reviews.info is a site I was on last week and they have review DIY products that will show you how to build these types of solar panels at home. If you are not connecting the panels to your electricity supply, then all you need is appliances that accept DC… and then connect them up directly – no inverters or batteries needed… Pretty cool to connect up a DC TV to a panel at your picnic site… Solar power is pretty cool and free stuff :) I have used the Earth 4 Energy Build you own solar panel product and found it pretty easy to build my own, the first time I tried. I think there a review for it out on http://www.green-reviews.info Enjoy.

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