Orion "SolarCap" Tiles With Ultracapacitor Storage
In the recent past we covered solar lit floor tiles from Chile. The design relied on common rechargeable batteries to store the electricity generated by the built-in SPV panels. All small batteries, unfortunately, have limited design lives, use fairly toxic electrolytes, and have little realistic chance of being recycled. When was the last time you made sure your spent batteries were recycled? With that as background, we thought these newly designed solar powered floor tiles by Orion, wherein electricity is stored in ultracapacitors was a very positive step forward. "Very" is the right modifier for another reason: the ultra's have a design life of a minimum of 10 years, as compared to two or three for typical rechargeable batteries. The ultra's manufacturer, Maxwell Technologies, also claims that their storage devices "are made of non-hazardous, non-polluting materials, which present no environmental hazards or human safety concerns". Returning to the tiles, Orion states that the solar cells built into these tiles will gather enough energy, even if not in direct sunlight or on rainy days, to power the lights for at least 12 hours. The lights are LED's of course.For some detailed specs have a look at this pdf file from Orion.
Orion Solar Solutions, incidentally, is the Australian distributor for Carmanah Technologies, the world leader in solar-powered, LED lighting solutions to the aviation, marine and transportation industries.