Rural areas in the Philippines with no access to electricity depend on candles, kerosene lamps or battery operated lanterns as common household light sources. But aside from being costly and inefficient, they are also dangerous to use. Now, thanks to Engr. Aisa Mijeno, a lamp that is totally safe, environmentally-friendly, and capable of emitting light on just a glass of salt water will soon brighten up these communities.
Aisa was inspired to design the SALt lamp (SALt is a contraction of Sustainable Alternative Living) after living with the natives of Kalinga's Butbut tribe for days relying only on kerosene lamps and moonlight to do evening chores.
So how does it work? As simple as it sounds, the lamp uses a solution of one glass of water mixed with two tablespoons of salt to provide 8 hours of light. It will even run off seawater. Oh, and did I mention that you can also charge your smartphone or tablet from the lamp?
The device uses the same science that forms the basis of battery-making. In a typical battery, two metal electrodes are dipped into an electrolyte solution. In this case, the electrolyte is salt water. The electrode in the SALt lamp can last up to a year, depending on how often and long it is used.
Currently in the development stage, the people behind the product aim to have the lamps mass produced later in the year. However, their main priority right now is to deliver the SALt lamps to their target communities.