Technology

LuminAID Lanterns Are Solving The Natural Disaster Problem You Didn't Even Know Was A Problem

When natural disasters strike, there are countless needs that require attention. Medical emergencies, of course, but infrastructural ones too, like clean water, warm blankets, and safe shelter. One vital need that isn't often considered? Light.

Enter LuminAID. These solar-powered, durable and sustainable lanterns (which were featured on a 2015 episode of Shark Tank and got an investment from Mark Cuban) have provided light in the wake of disasters like Hurricane Sandy, Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, and the 2015 earthquakes in Nepal.

Architecture graduate students Anna Stork and Andrea Sreshta developed LuminAID lanterns as a response to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. In the tent cities set up for victims of the disaster, dark evenings presented unexpected dangers, but conventional solutions — flashlights, candles, kerosene lamps — came with drawbacks. They're costly, heavy, or dangerous in their own right. So Stork and Sreshta addressed those concerns by developing inflatable lanterns that are lightweight (for every 8 conventional flashlights you can pack and ship 50 LuminAID lanterns), long-lasting, and waterproof. As of 2016, LuminAID has distributed 60,000 lanterns worldwide through their own charitable initiatives.

Watch the videos below to learn more about LuminAID and the exciting potential of solar energy.

The Story of LuminAID

Founders Anna Stork and Andrea Sreshta discuss what inspired them to create the first LuminAID lantern.

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How Does Solar Power Really Work?

Find out how accessible solar power could change the future of our planet.

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Some Of The Coolest, Craziest, Most Promising Ideas For Solar Power Generation

Solar power plants in space would be the greatest source of sustainabile energy ever concieved.

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Written By Curiosity Staff December 2, 2016