Solar cell case / protector

3D turbine

I have a pocket sized solar charger that contains a Li-ion battery that can be used to charge a phone when out and about. The unit has a usb socket providing a 5V o/p to go to the phone (or other device). It also has a small white LED which can be switched in as a useful torch. I felt that while travelling around the solar cell panel was a little vulnerable so I designed a slide on cover to protect it when its is stuffed in a ruck sack or travel bag. It's basically a three sided box that can slide over the device and protect the solar panels. The three sides of the cover have a lip going around the top of each side which holds the cover in place once slid in. I have also added three holes (one of which is on a tab coming out the top). These can be used with the solar charger slid in the otherway around (i.e. with the panels showing outward to catch the Sun). These can be used to support the device so it points at the sun properly. For example, a short piece of thick copper wire can be bent from two of these holes to make a hook that could go over the apex of my tent and hold the solar charger into the sun.

Note: you can't print out 'into space' using a 3D printer, so in this design the slicer software recognised the problem and creates temporary supports to hold up the lip during printing. These can be broken off easy after print out.

solar cell protector

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Dr Jonathan Hare, Sussex University

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