Eight months after the Joos Orange won a prestigious CEA 2011 Best of Innovations award, this summer Solar Components released a 20 percent more efficient version. It uses an 8-bit microprocessor with proprietary algorithms to control MPPT (Maximum Power Point Tracking) and optimize the charge rate of its replaceable on-board 5,400mAh Lithium-ion battery — with up to 96 percent efficiency at peak input power. The sturdy, durable Joos Orange is approximately 6 by 9 inches and 1.5 pounds. Its solar cells, made of Mono-crystalline with Silicon Nitride anti-reflective coating, are urethane encapsulated for a long life without yellowing. And the Joos' heat-ventilating, water-submersible enclosure is rated NEMA 6P.
In a real-life account of its ruggedness, Andy Ruggenberg, Co-founder of ZeroThousand Motorcycle Collective, attests to the device's durability.
"I was going about 80 at the time, and after a careening down the road a bit, the Orange was pretty banged up. My riding team stopped to retrieve the battered unit from the side of the road. It's certainly a good deal uglier now, but has a great story to tell — and doesn't need a replacement!"
Joos Orange comes with a variety of tips to charge tons of portable devices. It has two LED lights to indicate the unit's battery capacity level and photovoltaic status — or you can download the free myJoos Dashboard for Mac and Windows to monitor its activity in real time on your laptop. And an optional reflector kit ($19.99) can supposedly improve its already impressive charge times — depending on latitude and conditions — up to 40 percent.
Credit: Solar Components