Last year was the hottest on record and this year promises to break that record. This means an upcoming summer with stifling temperatures and a strain on budgets for keeping cool. Luckily, Mistbox has a solar-powered solution to rising air conditioning energy use, using biomimicry to cut down cooling costs.

The Mistbox addresses an expensive, key issue with conventional air conditioning units: having to turn hot air into cool air. Outdoor condenser units have the hardest job in the process, using sticky summer air to cool the refrigerant that is then used to chill the air indoors. The hotter the day, the harder the unit must work – and the higher the electricity bill will be.

Related: Solar-powered air conditioning coming soon to trains in India

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By borrowing from our own biology, the Mistbox mimics the human perspiration-evaporation model of cooling down. After an easy installation, the unit uses solar power to produce a mist around the condenser unit, cooling down the air around it so it doesn’t have to work as hard. The company estimates 20-40 percent energy savings, and for the unit to pay for itself within a single summer season. Users also qualify for a federal tax credit because of its solar panels, making it even more cost-effective, and a smartphone app lets people track their savings in real time. This solution can keep us a bit cooler while we work on the bigger project of cooling the planet.

+ Mistbox

Via Treehugger

Images via YouTube