Wind Turbine Charges Mobile Phones

June 13, 2007 by Jeff Shepard

Orange UK has shown off a mobile phone charger prototype powered by wind energy. First reported in Cellular-News, the Orange Mobile Wind Charger is the result of months of research into a viable alternate energy source to power mobile phones during summer music festivals, where attendees more commonly live in tents for several days.

Working with Professor Shashank Priya at the University of Texas at Arlington, Orange commissioned the research into an off-grid wind-powered portable phone charger that would take into account the unpredictable English climate to ensure a constant energy source.

Although the research of Professor Priya’s team is still in its infancy and continues to be developed before mass consumer rollout, Orange has built fully functioning models of a mobile wind charger that will be on display at this year's Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England.

The wind turbine, weighing in at only 150 grams, is small enough to fit into a weekend backpack and is easily mounted onto users’ tents with a simple mounting bracket. So while festival goers are out during the day taking in their favorite bands, the turbine stores wind generated power in the control box, ready for when they return to their tent each night to recharge their phone.

Mobiles phones can be difficult to keep charged, especially during events as big and long running as Glastonbury. With capacity for this year's festival at a record high at over 175,000 spread across a sprawling 900 acres of farmland, keeping connected to your friends is essential for festival goers.

Hattie Evans, Head of Sponsorship at Orange, is quoted as saying; “As official communications partner of Glastonbury Festival, it is important that we continue to innovate and demonstrate how mobile technology can make festival life a little bit easier, whilst respecting Glastonbury’s commitment to being environmentally aware. It is a small way that festival goers can enjoy their mobile phones when and where they need them while they are at the festival.”