Panasonic recently launched “Cut Out the Darkness”, a contest designed to help people living in regions without electricity. The contest challenges entrants to design affordable cut-out lantern shades using easy-to-use online applications, and it supports the company’s goal to deliver 100,000 solar lanterns to off-grid communities by 2018. The contest will be open until the end of January.

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Conceived as a campaign to provide efficient lighting as alternatives to harmful kerosene lamps used in non-electrified regions, the solar lanterns are charged during daytime and used for lighting at night. This highly successful project has so far brought light to numerous communities around the world and helped curb fire and health risks, along with carbon dioxide emissions, associated with using kerosene lamps.

The “Cut Out the Darkness” project enables people around the world to design a shade, 100 of which will be chosen and fabricated by laser cutters and delivered to homes and schools in regions without electricity. Solar lanterns and shades will be judged in a popularity poll and will, together with shades designed by world renowned paper-cut artists, help those in need.

The entire process, from design to submission, is completed online. The progress of the project will be regularly updated on the contest’s website and Facebook page.

+ Cut Out the Darkness Project

+ 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project