Last month, Eton, manufacturer of kinetically powered gadgets, introduced the Scorpion. It is a hybrid of Eton’s typical fare, this time incorporating solar power into the equation. The gadget can be used by hikers to charge mobile devices, access weather reports, listen to the radio and power a built-in LED flashlight.
The Scorpion may be powered by either winding a hand-crank or via solar energy. It allows updates on weather conditions through the National Ocean and Atmospheric Association’s (NOAA) weather band. The radio tuner is digital and it even comes equipped with a bottle opener. The Scorpion’s aluminum carabiner enables easy clipping onto a belt or backpack for sun-exposed transport. A built-in USB port allows for the charging of cell phones. See specs for the Scorpion here.
The Scorpion retails for $50 and is about the size of a walkie-talkie. Eton also offers a few bulkier but more powerful solar devices as well. The SolarLink FR360 gets all seven NOAA weather bands, has more powerful lighting options and may be powered by four different sources: a built-in hand crank, AAA batteries, an AC outlet and integrated solar cells.
The SolarLink FR600 is a bit bigger and has all the features of the FR360 and more. That includes a siren for emergencies, S.A.M.E. Technology (location based weather alerts), backlit digital display and digital clock, and of course, solar cells. The FR600, largest of Eton’s solar gadgets, still only measures 7.75” x 8.5” x 2.5” in size. An easily portable device for camping.
The SolarLink FR360 and FR600 retail for $50 and $80 respectively.