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Man creates solar-powered parasol to charge your phone

An entrepreneur has created an umbrella cover that can charge your handheld devices.

Eric Hawkins, 70, from Wimborne in Dorset, south England, has created the Solarbrella, a solar-powered parasol that uses the collected renewable energy to charge up your phones and laptops.

He said: "I came up with the idea sort of by accident. I've been in the renewable energy field for years and a lot of my work has been out in China. I went back to China early last year and saw a company had this flexible new solar technology.

"I got them to make some samples and changed the voltage and wiring and things. Then I had the idea can I box these to make complete portable solar kits? I use it to work outside in my garden and it can power my laptop for 11 hours."

Now Mr Hawkins is looking for an investor to bring his idea to the mass market.

He added to the Mail Online: "I've gone through life taking risks and looking for opportunities. We've had really hot weather recently and I took it down to the beach in Bournemouth. Quite a lot of people were interested and came over to see what it was.

"This product is attracting interest and theoretically there could solarbrellas all over the world, people sitting in hotels, restaurants, gardens. I've spent about $4,000 and two months in China, it's all ready to go, I just need an investor."

For the first 100 people who register an interest with Mr Hawkins, they will be able to purchase the 25-watt Solarbrella and two power bank LED strip lights for £189.

It is thought the retail price will be around £380 once it makes it to the shops and £600 for the larger size.

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