Author Topic: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.  (Read 2580 times)

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Offline Kelbit

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https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/uvolt/uvolt-watch-accessible-clean-energy-to-charge-your-0

Can't make this stuff up, folks! They strapped a 37mm x 37mm solar panel to a block and use it as a watch face. It then charges an on-board battery which you can use to charge your phone, either through USB or with wireless charging. It also apparently has tiny reserve batteries in the watch links, so with that many cells it probably also doubles as a pretty good bomb.

This has got to be one of the more impractical solar projects I've seen in a while. The back of your wrist generally does not have great sun angle, and even though the watch is friggin' massive by watch standards, that cell is tiny by solar power standards. They claim 21% efficiency, so even under perfect 1000 W/m^2 insolation with your wrist flat to the sun you'd only generate a bit under 300 milliwatts.
 

Offline Koen

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2017, 06:57:52 am »
I'm amazed by the number of "awards" and "achievements" on the founder's LinkedIn. Although I couldn't find something : anyone notices a previously successful project, company or product ?

https://ca.linkedin.com/in/antonydis
 

Online dunkemhigh

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2017, 04:31:15 pm »
The phone says 12:45 and the watch says 12:07. One of them isn't very accurate, and I doubt if it's the Samsung.
 

Offline m98

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2017, 06:33:44 pm »
Um, I don't want to sound jealous but how do you receive so many awards with an idea even a middle schooler would discard as silly after eventually reflecting over it?
Also, the design is quite bulky and unappealing.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2017, 06:40:49 pm »
People really seem to eat this stuff up. I guess it's easy when most people have no concept of quantities of energy produced and consumed by various methods.

A solar hat or solar backpack could be a semi-practical if really nerdy way of charging a phone, but a watch face? Right. You'd be better off putting the solar panel on the back of the phone.
 

Offline Kelbit

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2017, 06:03:03 pm »
Um, I don't want to sound jealous but how do you receive so many awards with an idea even a middle schooler would discard as silly after eventually reflecting over it?
Also, the design is quite bulky and unappealing.

If you look at the awards, a few of them probably get awarded to whoever turns up with a good presentation. In particular, Quebecor and Hydro-Quebec will probably only see entrants from Quebec, which limits the field of candidates significantly (Quebec's population is less than that of the Los Angeles metro area). I can't find any details on the IEEE award but I suspect that was also regional (IEEE has a *lot* of regional branches, not all of whom are competent). The "Hello Tomorrow" challenge appears open to the whole Francophonie, but they are in the top 500 of 3000, so not exactly too much to write home about.

I can also tell you from experience that these type of competitions aren't well-attended and the judges typically do *not* judge on technical merit. I once attended a competition in undergrad which was supposed to be an "innovation challenge" yet the entire judging panel were civil engineers working in construction management. Needless to say, the EE & Physics entrants did not do well.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2017, 06:06:14 pm by Kelbit »
 

Offline frenky

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2017, 12:51:43 pm »
I can also tell you from experience that these type of competitions aren't well-attended and the judges typically do *not* judge on technical merit. I once attended a competition in undergrad which was supposed to be an "innovation challenge" yet the entire judging panel were civil engineers working in construction management. Needless to say, the EE & Physics entrants did not do well.

When I was in high school I attended one of this technical competitions...
One team made a car mp3 player. And this was in time when first mp3 players for PC started to emerge. I was totally blown away by their accomplishment.
Needles to say their achievement was completely overlooked by "expert" judges who were totally amazed by volcano made of plaster with one RC Servo opening flood gates. |O
And of course volcano won.  ;D
 

Online Nusa

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Re: Uvolt: a solar watch that charges your phone. Wirelessly, of course.
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2017, 01:09:16 pm »
Skimming the kickstarter, the primary usage mode is to charge the watch's battery on a QI charger and keep it as a reserve battery for your phone. The solar charging is really more of a backup mode, and literally takes all day to get the same result. Far as I can see, it's mainly there to make it different from the plethora of recharge batteries that already exist.
 


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