The idea for the prototype came from Espoo based company SolarVoima. The entrepreneur wanted to create a solution for a compact learning kit which teaches the basics of solar power and works as an entry level product for consumers interested of personal green energy production. Green values and suitability for everyone were the two driving values in this project. The entrepreneur had his ways with the technology, but needed help with the design, usability and functionality. How to make the use effortless and educating even if the user is illiterate?
Solarkit is designed to be unfolded from a briefcase to work as a stand. Every object is placed carefully for easy usability. Heavy battery is located to the bottom for low center of gravity to achieve good balance while folded to the stand mode.
Solarkit’s frame is made out of two 16 mm thick cardboards, which are cnc-machined and then laminated together for a 32 mm thick piece. Bending band is 1 mm thick cardboard which is often used in outdoor ads, this is for longer durability for the prototype.
Circuit is illustrated on the package so anyone can connect the cables and components in the right way by following the illustration. Following a manual that is mostly visual, allows the learning to be fun and easy at the same time.
The making of Solarkit
The Solarkit prototype is part of e-Sprint, a public development project aiming to boost local entrepreneurship. e-Sprint is managed by Lapland University of Applied Sciences and it has an ERDF funding granted by the Regional Council of Lapland.