First Solar-Powered Mobile Tower In The US

Death valley, the Las Vegas Strip, The Statue of Liberty, now you can add Chalfont Pennsylvania to your list of things to visit whilst in the US.  Joking apart T-Mobile have become the first green mobile tower in the land of the free and the brave.

12 solar panels take this aerial off the grid, hurrah it’s a start, apart form the fact it cuts down some of the carbon footprint that mobile phones generate, its good news for places that have low signal strength because of one reason or another.  All you need to do is set one of these up and bingo…you have amplified signal.

Solar towers are not cheap though, they cost two/three times more than normal towers. But as with all things the price might come down if more are implemented by mobile phone networks woldwide.

And other companies are looking into other types of alternative energy base stations, Sony Ericcson are looking at ‘Tower Tubes’, vertical wind turbines to generate electricity for the base stations.  It’s a Swedish idea, four-blade rotating turbines that use less materials, need fewer repairs, last longer, use less energy and are naturally aesthetic to the surroundings as they use less land than your traditional base station.

But why the fuss, well mobiles already use a lot of energy in their production, the next area of high energy use is in the base station; they can gobble up as much as 80% of the overall energy used in a mobile phone during its lifetime.  Hence the push for a more efficient base station.

So it’s a step in the right direction. And if you do the maths, it took Sony Ericcson 20 years to install one million of these things and in the last three years another million. It just goes to show how big the growth of mobile phones is, in terms of both consumer demand and the necessary technology.

So diesel powered masts or solar powered ones you be the judge… I’m up for a little more sun power.