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Solar Panels For Your Pants 81

Posted by samzenpus
from the put-some-power-in-your-pocket dept.
Phoghat writes "A new line of clothes come with its own solar panels to charge small electronics in your pocket. It might be overdoing the 'Green' technology but for the low, low price of $920, you can own a pair of Go Urban Cargo Pants, which boasts 'fly front, low-slung drawstring waist, and two back patch pockets with button down flaps,' but the main reason you might want them is the: "'two side cargo pockets with independently functioning power supply.'"

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Solar Panels For Your Pants

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  • by jbeaupre (752124) on Tuesday December 28, 2010 @11:48AM (#34686866)

    And only pay $0.10/kWhr.
    (Or work and pay 0.)
      And buy pants that don't suck.

    • This technology is pants.
    • by Belial6 (794905)
      I'm not saying these pants don't suck, but I am saying that I only WISH I could buy electricity at $0.10/kWhr....
      • by Lumpy (12016)

        I pay $0.08 sucker... Living in a city with a Nuke ROCKS!

        • by !eopard (981784)
          19.41c per :( only good thing about it is that I'm on the same grid as two hospitals - the power has *never* gone out, but if it did you know that it would be a damn high priority to get it back online.
    • by Phoghat (1288088)
      Or go to Instructables solar power pages [instructables.com] and sew you own. Or Thinkgeek [thinkgeek.com] and for $20 buy the cells to power any AA or AAA device.
  • Insert the multitude of "power between the thighs/legs" jokes here.

    There, that should cover about half the comments.

  • Why bother opening your mouth with D&D 4th edition rulings or fun fact about the merovigian kings? Let your PANTS tell the football players at school that YOU'RE the person they should be beating up!!!
    • by Lumpy (12016)

      But herein lies the problem. These pants wil NOT be worn by a nerd. Nerds know they are 100% useless and wont work, Only rich yuppies with no IQ or education on the subject will buy them.

      So they are "rob me" indicators.

      • But herein lies the problem. These pants wil NOT be worn by a nerd. Nerds know they are 100% useless and wont work, Only rich yuppies with no IQ or education on the subject will buy them.

        So they are "rob me" indicators.

        I think thieves have a little more fashion sense than stealing pants that ugly. And a little more common sense than wearing blood-covered solar pants in front of the cop investigating a rash of solar pants robberies.

        • Possible "whoosh" on my part, but I think the gp was implying that being seen with those pants says nothing besides "I have far too much money".
  • I have enough power in my pants already...
    *ba dum bum*
    thanks, I'll be here all week. Try the veal....

  • Would someone like to try to figure up how many charges you’d have to get from these pants for them to pay for themselves?

    For that matter, you could also try to figure up what percentage of the energy used to build the solar panels and assemble the pants you’d recoup from the solar panels over their useful lifespan.

    • by vadim_t (324782)

      I actually own a backpack with a solar panel, and IMO you don't buy that sort of thing to save money.

      My own rationale was that I'm a heavy user of my N900. I play music, browse websites and use the GPS, and that sort of thing can drain the battery really fast. It's nice to have an extra reserve of power for when it's needed.

      I also like to travel, and it gives me considerable peace of mind knowing that if I run out of battery at an inconvenient time, I have a reserve.

      • A solar panel on a backpack is more practical. For one thing you can leave it out in the sun if you are resting in the shade of a tree (or are in a pub having a beer.)

        • Also, a solar panel on your backpack doesn't necessarily guarantee that you're going to get a beating when you arrive at school.
        • (or are in a pub having a beer

          Yeah you could hitch it to the post beside other peoples horses. Perhaps it should come with a bicycle cable lock.

          Incidentally I work in an office building with many of our state's police. I noticed that they now wear this solid body armour stuff as part of their normal uniform. Its not hard to imagine that you could build solar cells into the same material and maybe use the power to operate communications or lighting gear.

          • by arisvega (1414195)

            .. and maybe use the power to operate communications or lighting gear.

            Hahah I read "lightning gear"

            • .. and maybe use the power to operate communications or lighting gear.

              Hahah I read "lightning gear"

              They already carry those but I believe they run on batteries.

  • Washable? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sonny Yatsen (603655) * on Tuesday December 28, 2010 @11:55AM (#34686968) Journal

    I'm seeing a lot of the clothes with integrated technological bits and I always wonder one thing: Is this washable? From the looks of it, these things use removable solar panels. If someone forgets to remove them, I'm guessing you wind up with a $920 dollar pair of regular pants that looks ugly to boot. Let's face it, if you're stupid enough to shell out $920 bucks for these things, you probably aren't the sharpest bowling ball on the rack and you probably will forget to take them out when you wash it.

    • Now why would washability be of concern to the average Slashdot reader? Dammit, mom's calling, have to cut this short.
    • by Nidi62 (1525137)
      If they can afford to shell out $920 for an ugly pair of pants, they probably haven't done their own laundry in a while anyway.
    • This is the worst place to put a solar panel other then the bottom of your shoe. It is slightly tilted at the ground. A smaller (read less expensive) solar panel on on a hat makes more sense.
  • Those panels are way too small and badly positioned to be of any use. It also sounds like a scam, it's way too expensive. Solar panels don't cost that much.

    I own an older model of this solar backpack [voltaicsystems.com] and I'd say that anything smaller than that wouldn't be very useful. In my experience it comes very handy (for somebody who heavily uses a phone for music, web browsing and talking), but it is still limited by the panel. The backpack charges an internal battery and can charge a smartphone or music player. Most

    • I too have the last-year's model.
      Love what they did with making the solar panels detachable on the new model, although I personally would have preferred if they've kept the old 3-plate configuration.
      The new 2-plate one has somewhat less power and definitely less redundancy. 2 x 2 Watts instead of 3 x 1.5 Watts.
      Might be problematic with those devices that require to be charged directly from the panels as they need more than 600mA that the battery provides.

      On the other hand, I don't really think that redundan

  • Or are you just happy to be green?
  • This is ridiculous...where do most of the people with small electronic devices that MIGHT consider something like this live? In big cities...with tall buildings that block almost all direct sunlight that would be available to convert to electricity. Not to mention that standing next to a bunch of people also lessens the amount of sunlight hitting the solar panels on these pants. These are purely a fashion/political statement and serve no practical function...NEXT!
    1. They're ugly
    2. They scream "Rob me, I'm carrying expensive electronics"
    3. They're not going to charge anything very fast
    4. You're better off carrying a spare battery...

    So, out of morbid curiosity and boredom, I read the fucking article and I read the product literature. It's a small solar panel that charges an integrated battery pack. The battery pack is then used to charge your device. I again point to my initial conclusion that you're better off carrying a spare battery.

    • by denzacar (181829)

      The solar-charged battery combination works very well for other such devices.
      It is actually exactly what you would want from a solar system - solar when there is sun, solar-charged battery backup when there isn't.

      The problem with these pants is that they are hideously ugly, ridiculously expensive and utterly impractical.
      And with $175 for replacement panels it is clear that this is a product aimed at that consumer group much bellowed by sellers worldwide - fools with money.

      • So, basically we agree. You know, if it was like a flexible solar panel on a backpack, which I've seen and would use on hiking trips, I'd buy into the idea. In an urban environment (which the pants appear to be designed for) there's no point to the solar charger. Easy access to electrical power is all around you. I stand by my statement, carry a spare battery and charger.
        • by denzacar (181829)

          Well, with a backpack version you don't need a spare battery or a charger. If you carry the backpack around anyway.
          Also, it is handy when a friend needs to charge his/her phone/pda/etc. - as long as you have the right adapter or it uses a micro-USB connector for charging.
          Also, you can get one of those USB chargers for AA batteries and pour you excess power into those.

          As I do have one of those backpacks I can tell you that I don't use any of my chargers from spring to late fall.
          I could probably get by with s

  • But does anyone know where I can buy a solar coolie hat? For my head, not my roof.

  • Well... Someone had to link this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMwhl4IrPNc [youtube.com]

  • That's word because you know
    U can't touch this (oh-oh oh oh-oh-oh)
    Break it down
    (Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh oh-oh)
    Stop Hammer time

  • You want clean energy, buddy? Well asshole, I got your clean energy right here.
  • Are those solar panels in your pants or are you happy to see me?

  • Looks like someone stapled a couple of gift bags to a pair of pajama pants. Back to the drawing board!

  • A radioactive orange shirt gives off enough light to your solar pants to charge a cellphone!

  • I find your lack of [solar-powered] pants disturbing.

  • I really did think this was talking about underpants, I was like: "But no light will get there" when I read the title.
  • Back in 1999 or thereabouts on holiday I picked up a hat that had a solar panel on the top, and a fan in the brim that blew onto your face. I thought it was the epitome of personal solar technology. I guess it still is after looking at those pants.
  • by eyenot (102141)

    Two years ago I met a girl at a college dorm party who was wearing a solar power coat. This has to have been in /. news, already, right?

  • by fantomas (94850) on Tuesday December 28, 2010 @04:01PM (#34690536)

    In the UK "pants" mean "underwear". So some of the slashdot readers on the other side of the pond were probably very confused about this article :-)

    In the UK those outwear items you wear on your legs over your underwear / pants are called "trousers".

  • In truth, these pants direct the electricity to the wearer's nutsack, slowly sterilizing stupid people that buy these pants.

  • the more power you draw in?

  • to have something I could wear and it charges my devices from my motion.

  • Next! A methane fuel cell built into your underwear.

  • This is getting hot!
  • ...unless you're a totally awsome person.
  • by Schmyz (1265182)
    not to sure that my lovely better half would want anything electric that generates energy in my pants....

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