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Need a Charger on the Go? There's an Umbrella for That

Source: Vodafone

Every year at this time 'Summer tech' features pop up all over the internet.

Unfortunately, in case you haven't noticed, we haven't had all that much sun in the UK recently.

Luckily, some clever chaps have just unveiled a new high-tech umbrella which could make wet weather just as interesting tech-wise as warmer days.

The 'Booster Brolly', co-developed by Vodafone and University College London, has been designed to keep you dry while also boosting your mobile phone signal thanks to a micro antenna in the canopy.

It also features an LED torch, a hands-free smart phone cradle and a set of flexible solar panels which - when the weather is nice and bright - can charge your devices too.

The developers claim the Booster Brolly can charge a phone battery in under three hours. The skeleton is made of durable carbon fibre - and it's also windproof.

Dr Kenneth Tong PhD, lecturer in electrical and electronicengineering at UCL said: "The custom canopy has been fitted with 12 lightweight amorphous silicon triple junction solar cells that have the ability to convert light into electricity, through a series of highly sensitive photovoltaic semiconductors.

"The current generated is then transferred, via a voltage regulator, to the handle of the umbrella where it is stored safely in high capacity rechargeable batteries, or used to directly charge a mobile device through a USB port."

Danielle Crook, director of brand marketing at Vodafone, said: "We wanted to create a practical but high tech innovation that could genuinely improve a festivalgoers experience. The concept Booster Brolly does just that by merging cutting edge technology with a trusted and reliable British umbrella."

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