The lack of electricity is linked to illiteracy, poverty and health problems for more than 1.5 billion people. John Bowers has a plan to change this.
Bowers, director of the UC Santa Barbara Institute for Energy Efficiency, is one of the forces behind Unite to Light. The group's mission is simple: Create and send solar-powered lights to Third World communities, thus providing low-cost, clean lighting to those in need.
Nearly 60,000 solar lights, utilizing IEE's technology, have been sent out around the globe. Unite to Light now offers a combination light/USB charger, allowing users to also charge cell phones and other small devices — essential technology in places that often rely more on mobile communication.
Our video follows Bowers into the laboratory to observe the work the institute is doing on optoelectronic devices.