One of my favorite things about reporting on clean technology trends, is watching the change in design perspective. Slowly but surely, as we think outside the box of traditional energy sources, smarter, more creative solutions are discovered. We’re beginning to realize that when we don’t build our lives around the gas station or the electric company, the impossible becomes attainable.
Take these OnBeat solar headphones, for example. Headphones are most useful when you’re out and about. Typically, the sun is also out and about, shining its warm rays onto your head. The designers put two and two together, and realized it’d make a lot of sense to take advantage of readily available solar power by putting solar panels on the headphones and using them to charge your phone.
We normally put solar panels on the roof of our homes and offices, so OnBeat’s creators thought, “Why not put them on the roof of our bodies as well?”
The way the headphones work is really quite simple: A band of flexible photovoltaic material is placed across the entire headband. While exposed to the sun, the solar panels harvest energy which is then stored in two rechargeable batteries that reside in each ear cup. The headphones can then be connected to your smartphone via USB connection, and the energy is transferred to your phone’s battery so the beats never have to end.
Here’s the audio tech specs for you headphone experts out there:
- Audio driver unit size: 40mm
- Impedance: 32 +/- 10% Ohm
- Frequency response: 20hz to 20,000Khz
- Sensitivity: 100 +/- 3 dB
OnBeat’s creators have launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring their solar-powered headphones to market. A pledge of around $32 dollars reserves you a pair, and $88 ensures you one of the first pairs to roll off the line.