Light-weight Portable PV Power Source For Consumer Portables

Iowa Thin Film Technologies has launched its full line of Soltronix(R) solar-powered consumer electronics.

AMES, Iowa, US, 2002-01-18 [] Soltronix combines quality electronics with the PowerFilm portable power system, a patented thin-film solar module developed from NASA spin-off technology. Officials say it is ultra-light, flexible, durable, and avoids the need for battery changes. PowerFilm modules are based on amorphous silicon technology applied to a durable polymer substrate 2 mils thick, using a roll-to-roll manufacturing process. Finished modules are encapsulated in materials appropriate for the application environment. The Soltronix line includes a FM stereo/AM headphone radio, a pocket radio, MP3 CD player, and a CD-1 player. “The benefits of photovoltaic technology have been known for years, yet mainstream products have been lacking,” says president Frank Jeffrey. “I enjoy listening to music on my portable CD player and radio, but I hate replacing all those throwaway batteries.” Soltronix is also developing PowerFilm solutions for cellular telephone chargers and personal digital assistants, and their products can be used inside or outside, day or night. The solar module automatically recharges the batteries included with the products. The complete system supplies power for an extended period, with the HR-1 headphone radio claiming to play for 30 hours on a full charge. “It really is a new style in power that gives consumers the opportunity to eliminate the hassles of batteries and to do something good for the environment,” adds Jeffrey. “The market response to our headphone radio has been strong, and we’re projecting even stronger demand for our new products.”


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