OK... random entry here. I was driving home today through a bunch of road construction. I noticed several porta potties along the way. It made me think about a potential photoelectric application. I have thought of many B-side applications of photoelectrics over the years. I will try to collect them here.
--Photoelectric smoke detectors. Once upon a time the company I worked for did a community outreach project at a trailer park. A few weeks earlier a trailer had burned down and the occupant was killed. The fire department determined that the smoke detectors failed to alarm due to dead batteries. I think we should build photoelectric smoke detectors. They could still sound an alarm or indicate a warning light even when their batteries were dead.
--Photoelectric porta potties... Put a PE powered fan on these fuckers.
--Photoelectric standby power. My Cable box light doesn't need to tell me what channel it's on when I'm not watching it. My microwave doesn't need to tell me the time. VCRs (just kidding) and DVD players are other applications. We could incorporate a PE strip on these gadgets that trickle charged the time, channel and XYZ function. In addition to charging a small battery the photocell would be able to tell whether or not lights had been turned on for the last few days and turn off the display function if nothing was going on for X amount of time. This will happen.
--Photoelectric trickle charging of cell phones. No brainer. Slap in some A-si and extend battery life.
--Photoelectric lights. We have the outdoor variety but the indoor variety could work too. They could be set up next to the windows for charging. Even if they only extended the daylighting in a room for a short period of time it might be a feasible application. This application could complement daylighting developments in LEDs.
--Photoelectric emergency lighting. Emergency lighting is already battery powered. Make it PE battery powered. You don't need to use these lights often so they will always be topped up. The ability to situate these lights in stairwells that are normally lit without needing to run wires could make this a winning application. It might just promote more safety lighting.
I have so much fun thinking in this way I can't describe it. PE can't go in everywhere but it can go in a lot of wares.