The Australian National University (ANU) has recently developed wearable lightweight solar panels that will be used by Australian soldiers in order to power their devices in the field. The panels are able to convert light directly into energy using the SILVER solar cell technology.
Designed specifically for the Department of Defense, the SILVER bendable solar cells have a bendable radius of around a few centimeters, and the possibility to be placed on the soldiers’ helmets, on their fronts, their backpacks, on their weapons and even their tents.
Unlike conventional panels, the new silver solar panels are more rugged and can be used in temperatures from minus 40 degrees to 65 degrees Celsius.
“We would carry dozens of AA, AAA, C cells and D cells for our operations in Afghanistan right now. The average soldier would carry around half a kilogram of batteries to operate radios, night vision devices, torches, communications,” Major General Caligari said.
The silver cells are the result of a $2.3 million contract between the ANU Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems and the Australian Department of Defense.