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This Coke bottle lightbulb could help illuminate Africa

Nonprofit & Social Cause

The Lightie is a system that uses an empty bottle and a solar filament to provide cheap light in the places that need it most.

Even though the lightbulb was invented in the 19th century, a combination of poverty and lack of electricity infrastructure means that two billion people still live in complete darkness when night falls. Many rely on non-renewable and dangerous paraffin fuel to light their communities, which is why we’ve seen a number of initiatives that hope to bring sustainable and safer options to developing nations, even including lamps powered by gravity. Our latest spotting is The Lightie, a system that uses an empty bottle and a solar filament to provide cheap light in the places that need it most.

Created by South African designer and entrepreneur Michael Suttner, the engine of the device is a robust acrylic test tube-like container that houses a flexible solar panel, a lithium battery and a 300-lumen LED. The kit can be attached to any bottle top and then simply screwed into an empty or water-filled soda bottle. When exposed to eight hours of sunlight, users can enjoy up to 40 hours of low-level lighting, although the light itself has three intensity settings and can offer up to 12 times the illumination of a paraffin lamp. The Africa-tough device costs under USD 10 to make and the battery will last for around five years.

Both cost-effective and sustainable, The Lightie is a simple solution that makes use of existing waste products that can be found in even the most impoverished communities. Are there other ways to help people living without nighttime light?

Website: www.thelightie.com

Contact: www.thelightie.com/#page-6

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