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Published on August 1st, 2011 | by Zachary Shahan


Solar Lights Made of Plastic Bottles & Water

August 1st, 2011 by  

solar water bottle light

This is a pretty cool concept. An innovative solar lighting option developed in Brazil provides energy-efficient lights that probably won’t compete with the next LEDs and only really work in specific circumstances/roofs, but are super cool and have their own unique benefits.

The lights? Plastic bottles with water and a couple lids of bleach in them… and stuck through the roof.

The Brazilian engineer who came up with the idea did so in the midst of an energy blackout and crisis in 2002, as the first video below indicates. The 2-liter soda bottle lights are actually rated at 50-60 watts. Not bad. The lights have gotten the attention of normal folks and engineers alike, and have caught on a bit in some places. The idea has spread to the slums of Philippines, where every penny counts, through a program called “a liter of light.”

I was especially surprised to find out that there is no leakage and the bottles can stay there for years without any need for maintenance!  The water bottle lights are said to last for 5 years.


I imagine the natural light is good for the users of the buildings as well. Also, in my humble opinion, I think they look quite beautiful. The way the light shows through the water is really unique. I’m curious to see one in real life.

If you try this out, I’d love to hear about it and see pictures! Have you heard of any other places where these lights are being used, other than Brazil and the Philippines.

h/t sustainablog 
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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the CEO of Important Media. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA] — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in this company and feels like it is a good cleantech company to invest in. But he offers no investment advice and does not recommend investing in Tesla or any other company.

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