The Organic Electronics Association (OEA) recently released their latest OE brochure, to which they attached a very cool demonstrator - an organic solar cell (PV) powered flashlight:
What feels like a bit of cardboard actually contains a a roll-to-roll printed organic solar cell, a flexible lithium-ion battery and a printed electronic circuitry. And of course a small white LED. The association says that this can "give you the feeling" of the next generation of electronics: thin, lightweight, flexible and produced at a low cost.
The demonstrator works pretty well - after all this is just a flashlight. It's not very powerful though. It's not very impressive really - unless of course you understand the technology achievement and the amazing applications that flexible organic electronics will bring us.
The OEA actually made 10,000 units of the flashlight - basically achieving mass production. Mekoprint manufactured the flexible PCBs and 'boxbuilding' while Risø DTU developed the organic photovoltaic cells. The work has been funded by the EUDP Program from the Ministry of Energy, Denmark. They say that the process was highly automated and the yield was 89%.
So there you go. An incredible feat of engineering, an organic solar cell, a flexible battery and printed electronics - and the result is a paper-light flashlight. The future of electronics in your hands...