Sunglasses equipped with solar cells on the lenses that have the ability to charge a phone have been invented by German researchers.

The prototype glasses use the energy garnered from the lenses to power a microprocessor and two small displays which are integrated into the temples of the Solar Glasses.

[Read more: No more prescription lenses? These clever glasses automatically focus on what the user is looking at]

If there is enough energy being produced, the glasses can power a phone.


They don’t just work in bright sunlight (olgalngs/Getty/PA)

The glasses weigh roughly the same as the average pair of sunglasses.

Perhaps what is more interesting about the glasses is what it could mean for energy production in future.

If the technology could be applied to windows they could power much more than just a phone – especially for tall office buildings.

the solar glasses (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology/PA)
Solar cells on the lenses harness the power of the sun (KIT)

“We bring solar power to places where other solar technologies fail,” said Dr Alexander Colsmann, Head of the Organic Photovoltaics Group at KIT’s Light Technology Institute.

They don’t just work on sunny days. The Solar Glasses also work in the usual illumination of an office or a living area.

Under these conditions, each of the ‘smart’ lenses still generates 200 microwatt of electric power – enough to operate devices such as a hearing aid or a step counter.

The research is published in the journal Energy Technology.

Read more: Camera-enabled Snapchat Spectacles launch in the UK