By Andrew Liszewski
Instead of just slapping a thin, flexible solar cell onto the outside of a messenger bag, Diffus Design has taken a far more subtle approach with their Solar Handbag. Working with designers from the Alexandra Institute and Swiss embroidery specialists Forster Rohne, Diffus has integrated 100 miniaturized monocrystalline silicon ‘sequins’ onto each bag in such a way that they simply look like a repeating design pattern with their exposed wiring. Not as distinct as the L & V that many people lust after, but far more useful.
During the day, with enough exposure to the sun, the bag can generate enough electricity to recharge a mobile device like a smartphone. But when not being immediately harvested the energy that’s generated is stored in a lithium ion battery that remains hidden away inside the purse. And at night a network of fiber optic lighting inside the bag will also draw on the battery providing a soft, diffuse glow making it easier to find things in the dark. Pricing and availability info haven’t been announced yet, but it’s safe to assume it isn’t going to be cheap unless you can charge enough gadgets to make it pay for itself in the very long run.