Survivalists and the Handiness Of Solar Panels
In the many instances where a person or group must go ‘off-grid,’ they will be away from any discernible source of power. While this might be what they want (say, during a wilderness hiking trip), it might also be a circumstance thrust upon them. An example would include an agency entering a war-torn or tornado-lashed part of the world where various groups are searching for missing persons. Search and rescue teams will need power to aid their rescue operations and maintain safety. Batteries will only go so far. Without electricity, recharging these is impossible.
Instead of relying on batteries, many groups will take portable solar panels with them. Customers who purchase these panels include survivalists on adventures, relief groups and medical missionaries sent into a hostile landscape, and military groups who must use their survivalist training to get through a mission. The cost of solar panels in these situations is far below that of regular PV panels installed for permanent power collection on domestic roofs. They are lighter and smaller. Some are foldable and water proof.
Even small kits, however, come with accessories. These include inverters, chargers, wires, and more. A personal kit for a camping trip to a remote area where you just want to be able to communicate with the outside world in case of emergency can be carried in a backpack. Some portable products, however, must be carried by car. These are for consumers filming footage for documentaries, or for people whose interests require more power than the usual campers need.
The cost of portable solar panels for the consumer who needs to stay warm and survive a wilderness adventure will be several hundred to roughly $1,000. While this is nothing to sniff at, you could argue that your power source goes with you everywhere: the sun. As long as you can orient panels to capture its rays fully, these products do not waste space in your hiking kit.
For further reading on survivalism and the installation of solar panels, read this article.