Wed, Jul 29, 2015, 07:34 AM
A power outage - computers shut down as their batteries drain, worst of all, your smartphone dies. This scenario was one of the inspirations for Andrew Burns of California startup Stower to develop the candle charger. Its simplistic design is based on the principles of thermoelectrics, which have been around since the early 1800's. Light a candle, fill the device with water, and you have a charger. That diffusion outputs between 2-3 watts, perfect for charging smartphones and tablets. In an emergency situation a small amount of energy can go a long way, says Burns, co-founder of the company.