Sportswear brand adidas has partnered with speaker brand Zound Industries to design the RPT-02 SOL, their new wireless headphones that are solar-powered. The RPT-02 SOL can be recharged with both artificial light and sunlight. The headband of the headphones is made of Powerfoyle, a solar-cell fabric that generates electricity from both natural and artificial indoor light.
According to the website, Powerfoyle is a “groundbreaking solar-cell technology, invented and produced in Sweden by Exeger. After 12 years of research and development, it’s the beginning of a new era of self. It took a company from the darkness in Sweden to invent the most resilient solar-cell technology in the world. Designed to power electronic devices with indoor and outdoor light where we live our everyday lives.”
A stack of photovoltaic sheets that have been printed onto a plastic sheet and are 100 atoms thick make up Powerfoyle. The photosynthetic process used by plants to convert light energy into chemical energy served as the inspiration for Powerfoyle. The nanolayers of material produce energy that when exposed to light, powers the headphones. Through an indicator on the side of the headband, the owners can identify where the strongest light source is and use that to charge their headphones.
According the adidas, “the adidas RPT-02 SOL are self-charging sport headphones […] equipped with all the playtime you need, you get to listen to the music that motivates you to go the distance. Power your performance using light and sound as the ultimate source of energy.” Additionally, “51% of the product consists of plastic of which 87% is post-consumer recycled PC-ABS and recycled nylon (excluding plastics in electronic components).”
Although the ideal source of power for the headphones is natural sunshine, the photovoltaic material is also powered by ordinary bulbs and lights. This is unlike any other material on the market that is photovoltaic; these headphones are able to harness energy from other sources, including indoor lighting, rather than being restricted to solar power energy.
On a full charge, the headphones are capable of sustaining up to 80 hours of music listening, which is a remarkable range.
Anders Olsson, the product manager of Zound Industries, shared that the amount the headphones will charge is directly related to the amount of light that the headband receives. This means that the strongest charge will always be obtained outside on a sunny day, because direct sunlight is always stronger than any indoor or artificial light.
These headphones will surely be a game changer for exercise fiends who want to utilize their time outdoors. The adidas RPT-02 SOL headphones are available to purchase for £200 GBP, which is about $230 USD.
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Photo via adidas