BioLite BaseLantern is a portable, flatpack lantern designed specifically for off-grid living. The design contains a lot of light in a small package, which its designers aptly describe as “No bigger than the sandwich you pack in your lunch”. With Bluetooth connectivity and the functionality of a mini smartgrid, it is capable of staying alight for hours while also providing power to other electronic devices.
Inspired by the principles of fibre-optic cables and using edge lighting instead of diffusing lenses, BaseLantern is able to make use of its entire surface and still be four times smaller than its closest competitor. BioLite illuminates further, “The result is a super compact lantern that can throw 500 lumens of light in a footprint no bigger than, well, a sandwich”.
BioLite also includes custom designed SiteLights. By connecting these stringed lights through two ports in the BaseLantern, the lighting provided by the device can be shared to an even greater area.
Its rechargeable internal battery allows it to charge other devices. The BaseLantern can also be charged off grid at anytime by using power-generating gear, such as BioLite’s SolarPanel5+ or BaseCamp Stove.
A unique feature of the BaseLantern is its smartgrid connectivity. BioLite explains, “Your phone is one of the best remote controls out there, so we built a custom low energy Bluetooth app that connects with your BaseLantern and transforms it into your own miniature smartgrid”.
The mini smartgrid uses real-time analytics that calibrate energy usage so that you know when battery levels are low and need refreshing. It can also detect when you are near your BaseLantern, so that it turns on when approached and off when no longer needed.
The project is on Kickstarter, hoping to get funding and support from the public. The money made will contribute to further develop other devices that help make our lives easier and that find “solutions to the big challenges we face where the grid doesn’t exist.” Ultimately their goal is to help those without access to basic amenities, “At BioLite we’re on a mission to bring safe, affordable energy access to families living in energy poverty.”
BioLite adds, “Reliable lighting in emerging markets can transform a life: it’s a child able to read her homework… it’s a family empowered to leave dirty, expensive kerosene behind and bring bright, safe light into their home.”