[ YouTube ] Senior Product Engineer at BioLite Tim Connelly on his biggest challenge designing the PowerLight Mini:
Getting the light guide pattern to its highest efficiency took multiple tooling samples. Each time we had a new sample, we’d have to remodel the light guide, but we finally got it!
BioLite’s PowerLight Mini acts as a personal light, a lantern, a bike light, and even a portable battery for your gadgets. Very useful, and the design is nice and simple. A comment on the light guide: hundreds if not thousands of brilliant engineers have been perfecting light guides in the display industry for over 20 years. I would be surprised if a light guide solution for a single LED light source did not already exist for something as small as the PowerLight Mini.
Industrial Designer at BioLite Mindy Abbruzzi on the biggest success while making the PowerLight Mini:
To me, our biggest success was when we turned on PowerLight Mini for the first time and saw how well the light guide worked. The light was so even and impressively bright, even to the Product Development team who had high expectations. We had applied a lot of learnings from developing PowerLight to developing PowerLight Mini and seeing those insights pay off was rewarding because it meant we truly had a better understanding of how to improve and perfect edge lighting systems.
Simply look at all the smartphones, tablets, notebooks, monitors, and TVs. They all use light guides to evenly distribute light toward the front of the display. I agree and believe companies like BioLite should either own or know better than anyone else technologies and knowledge that make them competitive, but in the case of light guide technology it might have led to better performance requiring less engineering resources if BioLite had taken advantage of light guide technology from the display industry.
I could be completely wrong; maybe the good folks at BioLite invented a much better light guide the display industry should take notice of. Not likely, but definitely possible. The BioLite PowerLight Mini is sold at a slightly uncomfortable price of US$44.95.