Pedal And Solar-Powered ELF Electric-Assist Vehicle From Organic Transit.

Organic Transit's ELF Electric-Assist Vehicle
Organic Transit’s
ELF ($4000) is three-wheeled, one-person electric-assist vehicle that can be recharged via a rooftop solar panel, pedaling or by wall-charging the ELF’s removable battery. Its slim design and bicycle classification allows the ELF to travel on the road or bike paths in all 50 states. The ELF can travel up to 30 miles on one charge and it’s also able to carry approx 350 lbs of cargo in addition to the rider.

Organic Transit has turned to Kickstarter to help raise funds and their timing couldn’t be better – pitching a product called ELF in December couldn’t hurt fundraising. [Clean Technica]

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The Solar-Powered SolarCross Turns The Electric Mountain Bike Idea To An “11”

SolarCross PV and Battery Powered Mountain BikeTerry Hope is the inventor and builder of the SolarCross solar-powered mountain bike and he did it for around $700 (Specialized FSR bike frame included). The SolarCross avoids fossil fuels altogether and can be powered by a pair of solar charged batteries or it can travel up to 2 mph using just the power generated by the front mounted solar panels.

You have to check out Mr. Hope’s website for more technical information on the SolarCross. It may not be where electric bikes are headed but the SolarCross mountain bike is definitely original. [Earthtechling]

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Son-X Octavia Swing-Set Accessory: Just Because It’s Solar Doesn’t Mean It’s A Good Idea.

Son-X Octavia Swing AccessorySon-X’s solar-powered Octavia attaches to a kid’s playground swing chain/rope and either plays applause, a beat or an orchestra sound based on how high the ‘swinger’ goes. From Son-X’s website:

“After a certain time on the swing and/or when the child reaches a certain height he or she is rewarded with a sound experience. When reaching next level another sound will be triggered.”

So the Octavia is basically a swing set personal trainer that challenges the rider to go higher and rewards them with sound. It might not be a good idea to push kids to go higher on the swing but it could just be me hovering again.

So the Octavia inspired me to come up with a couple other ideas, all solar-powered, that are designed to encourage a playground activity:

  1. Brutus – based on the volume of the wearer’s voice and word choices, the Brutus will start by offering a high-five and transition to an imaginary chest bump based on successful playground bullying.
  2. Agrippa – aka Lose Your A’Grip’pa. Goads kids to unsafely climb the monkey bars. Reaching the top and jumping (or falling), the Agrippa will congratulate the wearer and make the 911 call.
  3. Claudius – simple: run into walls, playground structures or other kids and Claudius will first announce “Whoops! I’m a big Claude.” Increasing the force/speed of impact and the Claudius will reward the wearer with a Nelson, from the Simpsons, “HA HA!”

And oh, the Octavia sells for $625. [Gizmodo]

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The Ray: A Suction Cupped Solar-Powered Cellphone Charger

The Ray Solar Powered ChargerThe Ray is a smartly designed solar powered charger from Brandon Craven that can stand on a table top and most importantly, attach to your windshield with a suction cup to face the sun and charge your electronic devices. Charging your cellphone can be handled directly through the Ray’s USB connector via the solar panel or by drawing power from its included battery. You can pre-order the Ray through Quirky.com. Once they hit 2000 pre-orders, they can go into production. [Quirky via Gizmodo]

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d.light: Making Solar-Powered Lighting Affordable

Inspired by an article on FastCompany.com.

d.light S1 Solar Powered Reading LightMost people sh#t a brick when they hear how much it costs for solar-powered anything but d.light is out to make solar more affordable. Their latest offering, the d.light S1, is a solar-powered study lamp that sells for around $10 and works for 4 hours on a full days’ charge. The best feature about d.light is that they’re not marketing their products to the eco-suavé – instead, d.light’s goal is to get their products in use so they don’t apply the “pay-more because we’re green” markup.

It’s great to see a company like d.light opting not to exploit the good intentions of conscientious consumers by demanding a premium price for their sustainable product. Check out their website to see their other offerings including the d.light S250, which sells for $45 and works as a solar-powered lantern and mobile phone charger.

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