No, this isn’t a trick project. It actually works. Since the energy source for this flashlight is light and it works just fine at night, it must have a way of storing energy–and it does. However, like commercial solar powered flashlights, which store chemical energy in batteries which then convert this chemical energy to electrical energy, this flashlight stores electrical energy directly in two one-farad super capacitors. Today we use two 1-farad capacitors to store electrical energy to light an LED; tomorrow we will be using a bank of 10K farad capacitors to store electrical energy to power an automobile!
Solar Powered Flashlight With No Battery!
Make a flashlight whose energy source is light. Despite not having a battery, the flashlight will work fine at night.
- ultrabright white LED (1)
- small 4.5V solar panel (Radio Shack Cat. No. 2770045) (1)
- 5-1/2' 1x3 board (1)
- Resistors, 1kΩ (1)
- 1 farad, 2.5V super capacitors (All Electronics, Cat. No. CBC-22) (2)
- 1N4001 or equal rectifier (1)
- Popsicle stick switch (See Steps 1 thru 11) (1)
- small quantity of #22 hook-up wire (1)
- 1/2' #6 hex head sheet metal screws (6)
- General purpose household cement (1)
- 5-1/2" 1x3 board
- small 4.5V solar panel (Radio Shack Cat. No. 2770045)
- ultrabright white LED
- 1N4001 or equal rectifier
- 1 farad, 2.5V super capacitors (All Electronics, Cat. No. CBC-22)
- 1/2" #6 hex head sheet metal screws
- small quantity of #22 hook-up wire
- General purpose household cement
- Popsicle stick switch (See Steps 1 thru 11)
- Resistors, 1kΩ
I've been designing contraptions since I was 12. One early contraption I made was designed to turn a room light on when dark, nearly burned the house down! It also stunk the house up since its selenium rectifier overheated big time which is a real no-no.
I've learned a lot since then...thank God! Since I became interested in electricity about the time I started to crave hot dogs roasted on an open fire, I went to the Illinois Institute of Technology and received a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering. After that I started to turn out the electronic contraption designs and their prototypes at a furious pace. Many of these designs I had published in many electronic magazines such as Popular Electronics, Radio-Electronics, Modern Electronics, etc. etc. etc. and I am still doing it. My aim now is to instill in the viewer an interest in electronics AND knowledge of it as well. I firmly believe interest and motivation comes before knowledge--just look at the movie "October Sky"!