Need a cost-effective and environmental-friendly way to light up your garden shed? Check out the solar bottle bulbs that an NGO in the Philippines, MyShelter Foundation, are using to light up homes in the country’s slums.
The solar bottle bulb, which was designed and developed by MIT students, are now being used to brighten up the homes of thousands (with the aim of hitting the 1 million mark by 2012) of poor Filipinos that still do not have access to electricity. The cool thing about this bottle bulb is that is very easy to construct, and can in fact be replicated by anyone that has access to plastic bottles, water, bleach, cutters (for the corrugated roof) and sealant (you don’t want the roof to leak!). In short, just about anybody (including you!) can make a solar bottle bulb to light up a dark windowless room.
So just how much light can you get out of a liter of bottle filled with water? Each solar water bulb gives of as much light as a 55 watt electric bulb does! That’s pretty bright, right?
Room using solar bottle bulbs
So the next time you step into your dark garden shed because of a burnt out bulb, do consider installing your own solar water bulb. Not only will you not need to change the bulb that often (although you might indeed have to change the “bottle bulb” every few years), it will also save you money on your electric bill, however small that may be.
Here’s the link to the step-by-step instructions on how to make your own solar bottle bulb.
Oh, and in case you’re not too sold on the idea, you can of course always just consider installing glass windows on your shed or using Lexan as roofing material. Neither would be as inexpensive as a plastic bottle nor put to practice our RE-USE motto, but hey it’ll still save you on electricity.
Photo courtesy of Isang Litrong Liwanag (One Liter of Light)