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SunNight Solar Looks to Spread Light
to Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan

Solar-powered flashlight huge boon to trips in remote areas

SunNight Solar Press Release - 11/11/2008
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US Troops Stationed in Fallujah, Iraq

US Troops Stationed in Fallujah, Iraq

HOUSTON, Tx. - SunNight Solar, renewable energy company and creator of the web-famous BOGO Lights Program, is looking to spread some light to American troops abroad this holiday season. The company is seeking to partner with its loyal customers and the American people to provide much needed solar power to our military service-members deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, with a goal of providing a solar powered flashlight to each and every serviceman and woman serving in the two regions.

Donors will select a non-profit military support group from a list of approved recipient partners on SunNight Solar's website ( The organizations will then include the donated lights in holiday care packages they send to the troops in December. SunNight Solar is offering this program at wholesale prices + $5 per light. The additional $5 will be donated to the selected non-profit organization to offset shipping costs and underwrite the charity's operating expenses.

SunNight Solar gave birth to the idea after receiving vast response to its 500 Giveaway contest which posed the question "What is the most interesting way you will use your new solar flashlight?" and offered a free light to the 500 best responses. As the replies flooded in, one theme was near constant: military use in combat zones because batteries and light, quite simply, are hard to come by. While the U.S. Military provides battery-powered flashlights to its troops, the hassle of obtaining, carrying and/or recharging batteries for flashlights is burden that can slow them down.

One soldier writes, "My team and I are currently stationed in Iraq on a (base) that does not have street lamps or quality light sources. It's the "dark side" of serving on a Forward Operating Base. We have to use flashlights for everything -- especially the bathroom as port-a-johns are easily infested with spiders and scorpions. It's a real pain burning through all the batteries, too. Such a waste when we get 12 hours of cloudless skies and blazing sunshine everyday!"

While the initial cost for a solar flashlight is slightly more expensive than the typical conventional flashlight, when factoring in the cost of battery replacement, the overall cost savings and benefit to the environment are obvious. A previously attempted solution to this problem came in the form of "crank-lights" that could be wound up as needed. But as a USAF Pilot points out, humorously "If I had the time to sit and crank a flashlight or shake it enough for legitimate illumination, our tax dollars certainly wouldn't be getting a very good value." But in closing, he leaves the folks at SunNight with the chilling reality that, "the room lighting feature would be great for illuminating a dark corner of a poorly lit tent on a cold Afghanistan night."

SunNight Solar core values are deeply rooted in a humanitarian mission, expressed through its various social programs, especially those centered on improving the lives of women in Africa and making our troops abroad safer in any way possible. "Ideally," says Bent, "we'll gain enough support for this program to be able to provide a light to every service man and woman with surplus for the troops to distribute as gifts to the women and children living in these war torn areas." Having served our country himself, Bent says that a "positive conclusion in Iraq and Afghanistan depends as much upon our national kindness as it does our force."

About SunNight Solar

SunNight Solar was founded in 2006 by Mark Bent, a former US Marine and State Department official who has served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. The lights, developed with support from NASA and the Rockefeller Foundation, harness the power of the sun by storing energy in its three rechargeable batteries. A full day of sitting in the sun provides a dependable source of light at night.

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