SAMMANLÄNKAD: IKEA and Little Sun reveal first solar prototypes for a sustainable lifestyle

June 2019

A year ago, during Democratic Design Days 2018 in Älmhult, Sweden, we were excited to announce our partnership with IKEA, with the objective to inspire and explore new ways of harnessing the power of the sun through intelligent design whilst raising awareness for the global need for energy access for all.

At this year’s event, Olafur gave the audience a sneak peek at the first prototypes resulting from the collaboration. SAMMANLÄNKAD will offer a series of new solar products that will contribute to sustainable and independent from electrical grid lifestyles.

SAMMANLÄNKAD is the name of the product range and means CONNECTED in Swedish, inspired by our motto “We are all #ConnectedByTheSun”. The idea behind this: we all share the same sun and its power. The series of products aims at making this thematic tangible.

“We want to connect the world by sharing the power of the sun in order to promote a sustainable lifestyle. The collaboration with IKEA is a huge opportunity to raise awareness for energy access and the urgent need for global solutions, while at the same time working with world-leading product designers”, says Olafur Eliasson, founder of Little Sun.

The first products are to be released in 2021 in all IKEA markets.

James Futcher, creative leader at IKEA of Sweden shares, “Energy is vital in life today, but still many people have no grid at all or a broken grid. We want to find smart solutions for them as well as for people that have access but want to reduce their energy consumption to adapt to a more sustainable lifestyle”.

Together with IKEA, we aim at facilitating people’s lives and at the same time reducing dependency on unreliable public infrastructure by focusing on solar energy.

SAMMANLÄNKAD: collaboration between IKEA and Little Sun from Little Sun on Vimeo.

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“Many of us are so used to power and energy that it is hard to even imagine what would happen if our connection was cut off. Since everyone has access to the sun, we see it as a massive opportunity to use it in our homes to light up spaces and charge our mobile devices, to facilitate life in many other ways and make people more independent”, says James Futcher.

We have been learning from those living outside the electrical grid, through their own choice or not, to understand their experiences and the challenge they face. Gaining a clearer idea about their needs has helped to come up with a range of products which can improve life in and outside of the home. Since the beginning of our collaboration with IKEA, we have been developing solar panels that can be attached and connected to windows, charging docks and lights but can also provide solutions for active outdoor life.

One of the values of Little Sun is to connect and include people worldwide, to take positive action. Therefore, we are very excited that IKEA is joining us in our clean energy initiative.

Photo and video credits: Inter IKEA Systems B.V., Little Sun