The Quest for a Term: The Usable Portable Electric Energy Unit

When Apple first launched the iPhone in 2007, it coined the term “app” for small, mobile-oriented, server-based or client-based applications that people can easily download and use in their new iPhone.

If Apple had been run solely by engineers, these mini applications would have probably been called “Third Party IOS Runtime Client/Server Micro Software” with some mumbly suffix. But luckily for Apple and the rest of us, they stuck by a simple, cool term conjured up by visionaries and marketers - “App”.

We at Kalisaya, (along with other small pathfinders in the portable energy arena like Samsung, Apple and Google) are trying to find a common term to quantify the amount of portable electric energy a common user can intake, store, carry and use. Be it the battery of an iPhone (around 10Wh), iPad mini 4 (19.5Wh), average laptop (55-80Wh), or KaliPAK 601 (558Wh) – the term is vital for all of us who aspire to be smart energy users So, please forgive us, engineers worldwide - we couldn’t have done it without you; but when it comes to user experience and to educating a market, “Wh or “WattsHour” is a much easier name for a metric quantifying energy consumption than “a multiplier of the amount of energy charge in a battery that allows one ampere of current to flow for one hour (Ah) X a nominal value assigned to a circuit or system for the purpose of conveniently designating its voltage class (V).”

If you insist on technicalities, then Wh is an accurate and comprehensive term for a closed system like the KaliPAK. When you place our foldable solar panels in direct sunlight, and they generate, for example, 40 Watts in 3  straight hours, it’s safe to say that you contributed 120Wh (40x3) of storable power to the KaliPAK’s battery. In the KaliPAK 601’s battery, this comprises a 20% power boost.

On the other hand, when you use the KaliPAK to charge your laptop (say 60 watts), light one 10W kaliLED flood light, and charge 4 iPhones (around 12W each) for one full hour, you consume  118 (60+10+48) Watts-hour of energy from the KaliPAK’s battery pack.

So it’s true we don’t “generate” Wh. Wh is used to measure consumption.

The Wh’s senior sibling, KWh, was invented by electricity companies, in order to bill us for the amount of power (Watts or Kilowatts) we use over a specific timeframe (hours). Today, in a worldwide effort to break free of the electric grid, we use this metric to quantify the amount of energy we carry along with us in our portable energy endeavors.

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