By Evan Ackerman
First, the bad news: you can’t power your laptop from the solar panels on the Voltaic Generator solar laptop bag. I know, it sucks. But the good news is, you can use the solar panels on this messenger bag to charge you laptop, and all the rest of your electronic crap, anywhere it isn’t dark, for free, over and over, for the next 5 billion years or so at which point the sun will enter a red giant phase and swallow the earth and the ambient surface temperature around here will probably exceed the safe operating limits of your gadgets.
Until that all happens, though, you can enjoy the 15 watt output of the rugged solar panels on the Voltaic Generator, which is pretty significant. It’s enough to recharge a “standard” (read: 1-3 hour) laptop battery in about 5 hours of full sunlight, or boost the runtime of your laptop by somewhere between 20 and 45 minutes per hour of sunlight. An hour of sunlight is also enough to fully charge most cell phones, MP3 players, and small digital cameras. If you don’t have anything in dire need of charging, the Generator comes with an internal 58 watt hour lithium ion battery that can be charged from the solar panels, giving you a way to charge your gadgets at night. And if all else fails, you can cheat, and charge the battery pack with a wall plug or car adapter.
The Voltaic Generator comes with about a million adapters for electronics, and is available now in a few different colors for a not insignificant $499.