Epiphany onE Puck can charge your smartphone using your coffee cup

Epiphany onE Puck

Racking up nearly seventy percent of the $100,000 Kickstarter funding goal in just a week, the Epiphany onE Puck integrates the concept of the Stirling engine into a coaster-sized device that will charge smartphones over a USB connection. Rather than requiring the user to plug the device into an electrical outlet or a USB port on a computer, power is generated by applying a hot surface to the red side of the puck or a cold surface to the blue side of the puck. Specifically, it’s the perfect drink-sized shape for a steaming hot cup of coffee or an icy cold glass of lemonade. Conceptually, increased intensity of the hot or cold surface will generate more power. 

one puck cold sideAccording to the project details, the Epiphany onE Puck will charge all versions of the iPhone and iPod as well as all Android smartphones. Specifically, the puck will charge any mobile device that requires 1000 mA or less in power. Tablets and laptops won’t charge when using the puck due to larger power requirements, but the developer is considering larger versions of the device with greater power output.

Due to the working prototype phase of the device, Epiphany Labs hasn’t offered details on the amount of time the device will take to completely recharge a smartphone. It’s likely that figure will wildly vary based off the temperature of the surface being applied to the puck. It’s also highly unlikely that the Epiphany onE Puck will be able to charge a smartphone at the speed of a USB port on a computer or a traditional outlet.

However, the Epiphany onE Puck could be useful for travelers as it would allow users to power up their smartphone without having to search for an electrical outlet within an airport. The puck could also be taken out to restaurants or bars after work in order to generate a bit of power for a drained smartphone while enjoying a cold beer at the same time.

Epiphany onE Puck blue side

The working prototype of the Epiphany onE Puck has been designed to resist drink spillage, but the device certainly isn’t completely waterproof. Regarding the next step, Epiphany Labs plans to modify the design of the device to to tweak the internal engine as well as optimize the surface.

After finalizing the design, the company will start tooling up for production and order the raw materials to build the initial Kickstarter order. The group also plans on investing in marketing with the money collected from the Kickstarter backers. 

While the first 250 backers jumped on the $99 version of the device, there are two remaining contribution levels at $115 for a base device and at $135 for an engraved version. However, backers shouldn’t expect to see the final version of the device until March 2014. Identical to the risk that comes with all Kickstarter projects, the timeline could be pushed beyond March 2014 due to manufacturing delays. 

Emerging Tech

Lyd is a battery-powered, ‘no-spill’ bottle that is activated by your lips

Lyd is a battery-powered bottle that’s something like a sippy cup for adults. Its no-spill solution is a specialized lid that uses an algorithm to detect when your lips are on the bottle.
Mobile

Is your smartphone frozen? Here's how to reset your iPhone

You can do a lot with an iPhone, but if you ever run into an issue with it, the first thing you should do is restart it. In this guide, we tell you how to reset your iPhone, and explain how it differs from a factory reset.
Android Army

Confused by this year's Motorola lineup? Here's the lowdown on what's to come

Struggling to figure out your E5 from your G6? No, it's not a weird chromatic scale -- it's just Motorola's new roster. But how do you know which is right for you? Find out with our guide to Motorola's 2018 phone lineup.
Home Theater

TV calibration 101: Here's how to tune up the picture of your new TV

You’ve got your new TV out of the box, but now what? Our TV picture adjustment guide takes you through the simple steps to get the best picture from your brand new TV so you can set it and forget it.
Gaming

How to connect a Nintendo Switch controller to your PC

Nintendo's Switch controllers, including the Joy-Cons and the aptly titled Pro Controller, use Bluetooth, which makes them compatible with your PC. Here's how to start using them for PC gaming.
Emerging Tech

Regular Wi-Fi can accurately detect bombs, chemicals, and weapons in bags

Surveillance cameras and bag searches have become commonplace when it comes to security in public venues. But researchers may have found a different way to detect suspicious items: regular Wi-Fi.
Emerging Tech

Buying on a budget? Here’s all the best tech you can snag for $25 or less

We live in a world where you can get a cheeseburger for $1, a functioning computer for $5, and thousands of HD movies for $10 -- so it stands to reason that you should be able to pick up some pretty sweet gear for $25.
Emerging Tech

Science says waste beer could help us live on Mars

Scientists at the University of Colorado Boulder have developed a new super-insulating gel, created from beer waste, which could one day be used for building greenhouse-like habitats on Mars.
Emerging Tech

Engineers have made a new type of lithium battery that won’t explode

While statistically rare, the lithium-ion batteries used in mobile devices have been known to burst into flames. Researchers from University of Michigan have been working to change that.
Emerging Tech

Genetically engineered bacteria paint microscopic masterpieces

By engineering E. coli bacteria to respond to light, scientists at the University of Rome have guided it like tiny drones toward patterns that depict Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece, the Mona Lisa.
Emerging Tech

Elon Musk’s Boring Company wants to dig a tunnel to Dodger Stadium

Elon Musk's Boring Company wants to build a high-speed transportation tunnel connecting Dodger Stadium to a nearby Metro station. The system would run 150-mph passenger pods between the stadium and a terminus to the west.
Emerging Tech

Watch as a ‘lifeguard drone’ rescues a swimmer struggling at sea

These days, drones are finding a range of roles in a myriad of fields. Lifeguards, for example, are making use of the drone's ability to quickly deploy flotation devices while also offering an eye in the sky to survey the scene.
Emerging Tech

Wish you could fly? Here are the best drones on the market right now

To help you navigate the increasingly large and ever-changing landscape of consumer UAVs, here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now
Emerging Tech

The best drone photos from around the world

Most of today's drones come equipped with high-end cameras, which are quickly revolutionizing the world of aerial photography as we know it. Here are some of the best drone photos from around the world.