Solar power helping save lives in the developing world

The Solar Suitcase (Photo: WE CARE Solar)

We’re accustomed to having electricity all the time. In fact, it’s a big deal when our power fails for a few hours or more. But there are many parts of the world where people still must routinely depend on candles or a flashlight after dark, which can have deadly consequences in a medical emergency.

Hal Aronson, who teaches about solar power and designs solar systems, decided to do something about that. Now health care workers and patients in Nigeria, Haiti, Tibet, India, Rwanda, Kenya, Mexico, Burma, Tanzania, and Uganda are benefiting from his solution.

 Our award-winning WE CARE Solar Suitcase is an economical, easy-to-use portable power unit that provides health workers with highly efficient medical lighting and power for mobile communication, computers and medical devices.  The WE CARE Solar Suitcase was originally designed to support timely and efficient emergency obstetric care, but can be used in a range of medical and humanitarian settings.

The system includes high-efficiency LED medical task lighting, a universal cell phone charger, a battery charger for AAA or AA batteries, and outlets for 12V DC devices. The basic system comes with 40 or 80 watts of solar panels, and a 12 amp-hour sealed lead-acid battery. An expansion kit is available for utilizing larger batteries.

National Geographic Daily News has more on the Solar Suitcase here, including additional pictures.