Solar powered mobile computing

Steve 'Chippy' Paine has just completed a 450km cycling adventure across Germany with the purpose of exploring mobile computing using only Solar power.

Using only solar power to charge his UMPC, Phone, Camera, GPS and Torch, Chippy has blogged his 10 day trip and mobile computing experience here.

It has been interesting following his trip blog, and although he made it with just over an hours battery life, it is quite clear that current retail solar technology is still very inefficient.

Current solar panels are way below 40% efficient. Recent lab work has only just got solar panels that are 42.5% efficient. Obviously Chippy had constraints on the size and weight of solar panel he could care.

He has certainly inspired me to do some more active research in this area. I already have several smaller panels and was looking at recent offers on 150w panels - although fitting this to a bike might be tricky!

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