Divine Light!

Let there be light……Lead kindly light…… Moser’s invention now provides light to many a homes, shanties and slums all over the world. A simple device brings light and joy to homes.

‘It’s a divine light,’ Moser told the BBC. The ‘Moser Lamp’ developed by Alfredo Moser has taken off in the Philippines where a quarter of the population lives below poverty line, and electricity is usually expensive with the lamps now fitted in 1,40,000 homes bringing light and joy to the poor dwellers there.

moserL-1Alfredo Moser’s invention is lighting up the world. In 2002, the Brazilian mechanic had a light-bulb moment and came up with a way of illuminating his house during the day without electricity – using nothing more than plastic bottles filled with water and a tiny bit of bleach.

A Brazilian mechanism has found a cheap and innovative way to produce light and is up to 40 or 60 watts – with just a plastic bottle, water and bleach. Moser’s cheap and environment friendly invention is picking up steam in other developing nations around the world. With light comes joy and happiness in the lives of the humble folks.

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‘God gave the sun to everyone, and light is for everyone. Who ever wants it, saves money. You can get an electric shock from it (in jest); and it does not cost a penny, ‘ the inventor said.

The bottle and water can light up a room. Moser harnesses solar power by refracting sunlight through a clear 2-liter plastic bottle that is filled with water. ‘Add 2 capful of bleach to protect the water so it doesn’t turn green (with algae). The cleaner the bottle the better, ‘ he said. Moser than tops the bottle with a black cap, pushing it through the hole in the roof and fixes the bottle in the polyester resin. Even when it rains, the roof never leaks.

MoserL-3The idea of the lamp came to Moser in 2002, during one of the blackout in his hometown, Ubera, Brazil. he needed a unique way to light his workshop. Once he figured out the magic recipe, he placed the lamps in his neighbour’s homes and the town’s supermarket. from here the humble invention travelled far and wide.

Most of the plastic bottles used are recycled, 1.5 liter bottles that lend the technology its name. After being filled with water and bleach, the bottle is pushed through the steel sheet that serves as a metal lock to prevent it from slipping. It is then embedded into a corrugated iron roof. A small part of the bottle is left outside while the rest of it protrudes into the house. Sealant is put around the hole made in the roof to keep it weather-proof. The refractive properties of water ensures that the light from the sun that reaches the inside of the bottle becomes omni-directional mimicking an electric light bulb and emitting the same amount of light as a 40-60 watts incandescent bulb depending on the amount of solar isolation available. Adding bleach to water prevents it from turning green with algae and ensures a high quality light keeping the water clear for a longer time. In order to facilitate use of the invention through open source mechanisms, step-by-step guides on materials and installation are available online.

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The solution was first launched in Philippines by Illac Diaz under the myShelter Foundation. As of July 2011, the organisation had installed 10,000 bottles in the Philippines and shortly thereafter reached 15,000 installations and their goal for 2012 was to reach one million homes. In order to help the idea to grow sustainably, they have implemented a ‘local entrepreneur’ business model, whereby bottles are put together and installed by locals who can in turn earn a small income for their work. Additionally a liter of Light office has been established that conducts volunteer workshops.

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Moser’s invention now provides light to many a homes, shanties and slums all over the world. A simple device brings light and joy to homes. And with this comes light in their lives. ‘Lead kindly light.’

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Picture Post:

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India China border

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