The Ecos PowerCube is a self-contained pop-up solar powered generator

Interesting Engineering
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Seven years ago Ecosphere Technologies showed off to the world their first self-contained solar generator unit, aimed for areas where disasters had struck. Since then they have been busy working on refining the form and function of their system and now they have finally revealed their revison. The system is named the “PowerCube” and it can be transported just like any other shipping container. This means it can be taken via sea, land or air, to reach areas fast when disaster strikes. Once it has reached its destination, at the push of a single button, the system then transforms into a communications base, shelter and water treatment plant, capable of generating 15 kW of electricity.


[Image Source: Exosphere]


[Image Source: Exosphere]

As soon as the self-contained PowerCube reaches its destination it is easy to deploy. The solar panels are stored away inside the unit and slide out using roller hinges on both sides of the unit. The rollers have support from hydraulic actuators, which means that they can be positioned very simply. The photovoltaic panels extend outwards, with energy being stored in batteries on-board the self-contained unit.


[Image Source: Exosphere]

Electricity generated by the PowerCube can be put to use in powering the on-board systems which are neatly packed into the unit. One of the most important of these is the water treatment system that can provide clean drinking water. It powers communications and satellite equipment and can even be used for external sources, such as providing power to schools and hospitals.


[Image Source: Exosphere]

While the PowerCube was designed with providing disaster relief in mind, Ecosphere also pointed out that there is a place for the solar powered unit in many other applications such as humanitarian aid, the military, retail and residential.


[Image Source: Exosphere]


[Image Source: Exosphere]


[Image Source: Exosphere]

The unit comes with on-board atmospheric water generators, which can take water from the air. This means that the unit can provide water without a nearby water source , regardless of where it is deployed.


[Image Source: Exosphere]

Corey McGuire, the Ecosphere Technologies director of marketing, said that the idea for the PowerCube had come from Jean-Michel Cousteau, who is a member of the board. He said, "He asked us to figure out ways to bring energy, water, and communications to remote places--like a school in a village in the developing world--without the use of fossil fuels."


[Image Source: Exosphere]


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