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Unnecessary batteries from old laptops will help with coverage of problem regions

23 December 2014, 09:00

Leading research organization in India, IBM Research India decided to use electronics waste to help people who currently live without access to electricity.

According to one environmental company's assessment, more than fifty million desktop PCs and portable equipment each year fall into the dump, and this is only in the United States of America.

Most of us are accustomed to just click the switch to turn on the light in the room if necessary. But today, many people on the planet are deprived of access to electricity. For example, in some parts of India, some four hundred million people live without access to electricity and now, and to bring power lines to these areas, it is estimated that up to 10 thousand dollars per 1 km is required.

Therefore, lighting problems in some regions of India today are extremely acute and require a fairly cheap solution.

In IBM Research India decided to combine two problems: with electricity and electronic waste. The researchers plan to use renewed batteries from unnecessary laptops to provide electric power to the LED-backlight in the countries in the tracing countries.

In some regions, the problem with lighting is solved with the help of LED bulbs, which are connected to a solar-powered battery. But the new method of IBM's research center can significantly reduce the cost of electricity, which will provide the necessary lighting for more people.

The most expensive part in this system is the battery, says the head of the new research project Vikas Chandan. But it is this part that is sent to garbage bins every year. Chadman's group disassembled several batteries that were used for laptops, and extracted battery cells from them. After diagnostics, the batteries were assembled and only working samples were used.

Also, experts added the necessary electronics and charging controllers. After all the changes, specialists gave kits to residents of problematic regions of India, who were in great need of lighting. Residents of these areas lived in slums or sidewalk carts, converted to some kind of dwelling.

The trial period for the new type of lighting lasted three months, which showed that the old batteries from laptops did their job excellently.

People who tested new lighting asked the developers to make light bulbs with a brighter light and improve the wires so that they could not be gnawed by rats (in the final version, the developers took into account all the wishes).

A team of specialists noted that more than half of all batteries that fall into the landfill can provide the necessary amount of energy for lighting in homes with LED lights for 12 months (with the condition of using no more than 4 hours daily).

This project shows that thousands of batteries caught in debris and polluting our planet can help thousands of people illuminate their homes. At the same time in IBM Research India noted that their study will not pursue commercial goals, such kits developers intend to offer in countries where there is an acute need for lighting for free.

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Medical expert editor

Portnov Alexey Alexandrovich

Education: Kiev National Medical University. A.A. Bogomolets, Specialty - "General Medicine"

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