Members of the Case Western Reserve University community now have a new place to take a seat and recharge–literally.
This spring, a group of students built a picnic table outfitted with solar panels and a battery pack to serve as an outdoor charging station. They installed the table on the quad just in time for the university’s commencement ceremonies in May.
Powered by two, 90-watt solar panels, the battery contains multiple USB ports and AC plugs. It packs enough power to allow multiple people to charge up simultaneously.
“We wanted to create something visible to campus that would make a real difference in people’s lives,” says Elizabeth Freund, one of the project leaders. She says the team was inspired to build the table after watching classmates try to work outside only to have to retreat indoors to charge their devices.