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(image) NightStar® Renewable Torch
(accessed Feb, 2004)
© Applied Innovative Technologies Inc

NightStar® Renewable Torch

Replacing the original StarLight design in 1998, the Nightstar kinetic torch was developed by Applied Innovative Technologies, Inc. The NightStar®'s innovative use of materials, alternative energy sources and demonstration of design for longevity make this an interesting case study.

With only one moving part, NightStar® transforms simple motion into light. When gently shaken, a high-strength rare earth magnet passes smoothly through a wire coil, efficiently generating electrical energy. A heavy duty capacitor, which can be recharged repeatedly, stores the energy and delivers power to a super-bright white light LED. 

  • 30 seconds of shaking provides more than 20 minutes of light. 
  • in total darkness, NightStar® will illuminate a 12-foot diameter area at 50 feet. 
  • NightStar®'s state-of-the-art components are contained within a rugged, waterproof housing insuring operation even in the most severe conditions
  • the rare earth magnets used in NightStar® are composed of neodymium, iron, and boron. The magnets possess very high magnetic field strengths and are extremely resistant to demagnetization
  • the capacitor operates perfectly well in hot and cold environments, can be recharged several hundred thousand times, and will not corrode
  • the solid state LED (Light Emitting Diode) is practically unbreakable, has a rated lifetime of ten's of thousands of hours, and will produce 350-foot candles of light at peak brightness
  • the magnetic on/off switch is reliable, watertight and non-sparking
  • the housing is made from polycarbonate and ABS
  • (Clear NightStar® however, is made of pure polycarbonate; polycarbonate/ABS is not available in clear).
  • This is because it is difficult to break even at cold temperatures, and second, it is unaffected by salt water, mild acids, alcohol, methanol, ammonia based cleaners and is corrosive resistant when briefly exposed to petroleum products such as gasoline, oil and grease. 
  • Clear NightStar®'s however, are not as chemical-resistant against petroleum products but have slightly higher impact strength.

    The material and manufacturing costs of plastic are far less expensive then aluminum (aluminum is a likely choice for a metal housing). Additionally, NightStar®'s plastic housing will never rust or oxidize and weighs less then an aluminum housing that would provide the same amount of crush resistance. 


    For More Information

    For futher technical information about NightStar products and working drawings or to purchase a torch visit:

    [Created by Dr Vicky Lofthouse, Loughborough University (September 2007)]