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The Solar Powered Flower

2020 INNO-vation Disruptive Challenger, Sonoe Hanazono

Every now and then a piece of art is so eye-captivating that you can't help but want to learn more about the process and the inspiration for such an aesthetically pleasing work. That can be said about this wondrous device named the "Solar Powered Flower," from the creative mind of Sonoe Hanazono.

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The Solar Powered Flower, "Hikaruka"

2020 Disruptive Challenger, Sonoe Hanazono

Similar to how plants undergo synthesis, the solar-powered plant generates electricity in its leaves, stores it in the roots and it glows at night when it blooms.  Attached to the leaves are solar panels which efficiently generate power through light. This works even indoors and can use both natural light from a window and even artificial light. An illuminance sensor is attached to a leaf, when the room darkens at night, the flower blooms and lights up. When morning comes and the sun shines in, the flower closes and the lights go out. In other words, it functions as a nightlight.  At the same time, as a plant-shaped robot, it is being developed so that people can enjoy a new form of communication that has never existed before. For example, like taking care of a real plant, humans can give the device a "shower of light" to give extra electricity. Even if there is little sunlight on rainy days, the flower can still be made to bloom.  In the future, the goal is to make the device more compact and foldable to deliver a bouquet of light to those areas without electricity. 
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