Clean Energy Powers Rescue Device Concept

The latest in seagoing fashion also happens to serve an important function: alerting others to your position should you find yourself in need of rescue. The Solar and Saltwater Rescue Strap concept by Ilyssa Shapiro of Philadelphia uses the conductivity of ocean water to light high-powered LEDs, making rescue operations more efficient.

The strap makes use of a photo resister and thin film solar cell, which charge the water-resistant battery during the day and automatically turn on the LEDs when the sun goes down. This completely hands-free device works like an armband (cinching up, presumably, via the wonders of Velcro). After the battery runs out of juice, submersion in seawater keeps the rescue lights on until the person in distress is found.

Solar and Saltwater Rescue Strap

image via Ilyssa Shapiro

The device contains thin film solar cells, a lithium-ion battery, a photocell, a micro-controller, red and white LEDs, and a switch (should you happen to have a hand free, post-rescue, and wish to turn the device off).

This seems like a good idea for those who regularly brave the waves, such as thrill-seeker surfers and wind-surfers (as long as those blinking LEDs don’t prove attractive to sharks, too).

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.