Sunday, November 2, 2014

Solar eTree That Keeps on Giving

First came the Solar Tree – solar artwork created in 2007 by Ross Lovegrove, a Welsh industrial designer.

Then came the Strawberry Tree, the world’s first public solar charger for mobile devices developed in 2010 by Serbian company Strawberry Energy.

This October, Israeli company Sologic installed its first eTree in the Ramat Hanadiv Memorial Gardens and Nature Park near Haifa. It provides a shady LED-lit place to sit, an unlocked Wi-Fi connection, four USB ports for phone charging, and a chilled drinking water fountain whose wastewater then drains into a ground-level water bowl for pets.

The energy produced from the solar panels activates a camera and LCD screen display providing visitors with weather information as well as educational and environmental content. The LCD screen allows for communication between eTrees planted in different locations around the world.

An eTree costs between $15,000 and $150,000, depending on the number of branches. The most deluxe models will be able to produce up to 50 liters of water per day by harvesting the humidity in the atmosphere.

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