Wysips technology turns smartphone displays into battery chargers

27 Feb 2013

WYSIPS panel

A mobile phone in which the display acts as a battery charger? That's the thinking behind Wysips, a technology from French solar energy specialists SunPartner, which demonstrated it at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Wysips – it stands for What You See Is Photovoltaic Surface – is a transparent material able to be installed beneath the glass screen of mobile devices, or built into add-on charging devices. It's 90% transparent, and 0.5mm or less thick, and uses a combination of micro-lenses and photovoltaic materials to charge the battery of the device in or with which it's used.

The semi-cylindrical lenses are designed to maximise the light capture while keeping the layer invisible to the naked eye, and the system will work on either natural or artificial light. The lens system also has the advantage of increasing the viewing angle of a screen.

Wysips can already deliver 5.8mW per square centimetre, and the company hopes to double that output by next year.

wysips cutaway

SunPartner has already invested in a plant to produce its Wysips Crystal panels in Rousset, near Aix-en-Provence, with a capacity of 8m components a year:the factory is scheduled to start up in the next few months, with a view to equipping the first smartphones with the technology before the end of this year.

And it's already looking at other applications, including watches, tablets and laptops, as well as self-powered advertising displays – its Wysips Cameleon system can be used over areas as large as two square metres.

Wysips Glass technology is usable for windows in buildings, cars, planes and the like, delivering a 30W peak output per square metre, while its also involved in a consortium developing Wysips Textile, a power-generating fabric usable for blinds, awnings and even the roofing for sports venues.

J-L LedysAs SunPartner's Vice President Technology and Transport, Jean-Luc Ledys (left), puts it: 'Yield and transparency : the market pushes for those performances and new functionalities.

'Tomorrow’s world begins today; given its stockpile of on-board items, it will need clothing, luggage etc. capable of generating the energy used to power all of those nomad electronics!'

 

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Comments

brune.karl wrote:
so let me get this straight: Am I right that with that data at full illumination it would take about 35h to fully charge an iPhone 5?Not too sure if this will be a blockbuster... they have to crank up the efficieny a couple of times to make this worthwile..

I think the idea at this stage of development is to allow the phone to be trickle-charged while in use, extending the time between full charges, rather than this being the sole power source for the device.

When it comes to extending the battery life every little helps.

the maths?

so let me get this straight: Am I right that with that data at full illumination it would take about 35h to fully charge an iPhone 5?Not too sure if this will be a blockbuster... they have to crank up the efficieny a couple of times to make this worthwile..

Now thats whats known as a blockbuster product right there

Now, that's really clever stuff !