The new Solar Muscle Solar light
You might have seen a lot of changes on the FlexiWay Solar site recently: all pictures of our solar-powered LED lamp have been replaced by images of our new light which just has arrived: the Solar Muscle.
Our new solar-powered LED light: the new Solar Muscle
Flexiway Solar Solutions has improved their already unique affordable light, making it an even more lightweight & robust all-in-one solar light that is easy to use, weatherproof and hard to break, providing up to 8 hours of light per charge at full light-power, double at the 50% setting.
The new “Solar Muscle” is a unique light: it has 2 brightness settings and a new strong click-together system on all sides so you can join as many lights together as you like, producing as much light as you need.
Improved functionality in detail: what has changed?
We have listened to feedback from users all over the planet. They were extremely happy with the original solar-powered LED lamp from Flexiway, but thanks to their reports and new technology available, we have managed to create an even better, brighter, stronger yet even more affordable light. The light has been improved in several ways:
Of course the most important aspect of a lamp is its light! We use the newest generation bright white LED’s, producing 24 real lumens (12 lm on 50% setting), as tested and certified in a laboratory.
Each LED actually has a rating of 4-5 lumens, which would make it a total of 48-60 Lumens in theory. Unlike other companies that only mention these theoretical values, we are using real ones. Soon our light will undergo even more rigorous testing by the UN/WorldBank through Lighting Africa!
Square and thin!
Maybe the biggest improvement is its shape and size. Our old light was round and bulky and contained unused space inside. We reduced packing volume by nearly 40% by redesigning the light from scratch. As the solar-panel was rectangular (nearly square), we based the rest of the light around it, while keeping the important functionality of the first light.
Now the light is only 120 grams (4.2 Oz) and measures just 9x9x2.5cm (3.5×3.5×1 inch)!
It not only fits in your pocket now, but it also fits better in the square boxes we package them in.
Therefore we can now pack 40% more lights per cubic meter shipped (35ft3): nearly 3000 lights in total! This way we limit our own carbon footprint as well, as we can ship more lights in less space and our clients pay less shipping and storage costs.
Triple function button
We replaced the old 2 function slider button. It let dust and water in and limited the functionality. Our new 3-setting button is much more water resistant and offers 3 settings on our light, saving energy when needed (and allowing for a more discrete light, for example when reading in a room or tent where others sleep as well).
- Off, when the light is charging
- 50%, when you need light for reading or cannot charge for a long period
- 100%, when you need full brightness or when you can re-charge every day
More and better power
- Our new solar panel has twice the capacity, so even with less sun-power the batteries will charge.
- The new batteries we use are AAA size (they used to be AA size). This means they are smaller and lighter, while offering the same capacity (600 mAh each). Of course they are still regular size and easily replaceable: you can replace them when they loose their charging capability. They should last up top 500 charges, but we like to say that an annual battery change is required: when the battery lasts longer the customer is happy, instead of disappointed if it only last for 450 charges (it also depends on usage: 500+ charges would mean nearly 3 years when charging from empty to full, once every other day, see also our FAQ).
- We also switched to NiMH Low self-discharge batteries: they keep their charge for many months. This makes no difference for those who use and charge the light on a daily basis, but if you don’t use your light every day you can charge it and store it and take it out many months later when needed, and it will work. This makes the Solar Muscle a perfect emergency light (think power cuts, outdoor usage etc), but also means that NGO’s can order and pre-charge lights, so that they are ready to go whenever they are needed.
Click together and join the light!
A small but very useful addition is the connectors on the side of the lights. Now you can easily connect 2,3,4,6 or many more lights together in a line or a square.
Get a 6-pack of Solar Muscles for some real Solar Power!
It makes it easier to charge more lights at the same time. It is also very useful if you own more lights and need more light-power in one space.
Many of our users have only one light per room or even per family, but now they can come together for meetings or just for dinners, bring their light and click them together!
Stronger and more durable and weather proof!
Our light was already pretty robust, but we managed to make much more durable by making some more changes:
- Our light is now weather sealed with extra protection and has no problem with a rain shower if you forget to put it inside during bad weather. We will have our light officially tested, but the expected IP score (Ingress Protection) should now be 6/4, where the old score likely was 5/1. The first number is for the dustproofness (6 = maximum), the second number is for the waterproofness (8 = maximum).
- We used to have 4 tiny parts of plastic protruding from the side, with a little hole to attach the light to a wire. We replaced it with larger holes that are integrated in the casing, making it stronger and easier to attach!
- The entire case is now made of stronger plastic, so if the light is accidentally dropped (even on hard surfaces), it will survive. The LED’s are now inside the transparent case so they can no longer be damaged easily and they won’t let in any dust or water.
What did not change?
We made all these changes and managed to keep the most important aspect the same: the price.
As fuel & kerosene prices have gone up and up, the payback time for a regular family that replaces their kerosene lamp with our solar-powered Solar Muscle is often less than one month, paid back completely from kerosene savings, while the light should last several years (the batteries might need replacing after 1 year or more).
See the video below for a 2 minute explanation about the benefits Solar-powered lights bring to developing societies. The pictures at the bottom of this page link to the details of each of these benefits.
- 1 Alleviate poverty Reduce poverty by saving 25% of household costs!
- 2 Health benefits removing toxic and dangerous kerosene from households
- 3 Prevent fire hazards Kerosene lamps are leading cause of house fires
- 4 Enabling education Students can study better & longer, more money for books
- 5 Save our planet Stop global warming, deforestation and pollution
- 6 Increase income Light at night can create additional income streams
- 7 Empowering women LED lights create a brighter future for women and girls
- 8 Empower communities Light generates joint income, offers new possibilities
- 9 Increase safety bringing light in houses and community
- 10 Solar education Teach students and entrepreneurs about solar