Amazon.com  Anker® Astro E5 15000mAh Dual USB Portable Charger Ultra-High Density High Capacity External Battery Backup Power Pack for iPhone 5S, 5C, 5, 4S, 4, iPad Air, 5, 4, 3, 2, Retina Mini 2, Samsung Galaxy S4, S3, Note 2, 3, Tab  (1)A few months ago I set out on a quest to find a recharging device to take with me on the road and to have in the event of a SHTF of any kind.  I wanted a battery device that could recharge my mobile phone or pad device several times if the power were out, or in the event I found myself on the road with a dead phone, and needed a charge when not in the proximity of an electrical outlet.  Enter a bunch of research, a lot of reviews.  Quite accidentally I came across the Anker Astro.

So what is the Anker Astro?  For all intents and purposes it’s a portable battery with two USB ports for recharging your devices.  More specifically, it is a backup battery device to help you recharge your phone up to five (5) to seven (7) times before it needs recharging itself.  Now, during Hurricane Sandy, this would have come in handy had I known about it, and allowed me to keep my phone on for longer periods.  Looking at it from the pure marketing perspective of up to seven (7) recharges would have allowed me to recharge my phone from empty for the entirety of my period I had no power.  According to the marketing it also touts the ability to recharge, Kindle’s, iPads, and Android pads, etc.

When I received it (after ordering it), I of course, made sure it was fully charged, and proceeded to recharge my phone.  Which it did flawlessly.  I’ve used it periodically since, and it only dawned on me that this might be an important device for preppers today, weeks after owning the device.  I say this because, being in an urban and suburban environment, I find my CB to be useless.  Ham on the other hand is something I am still working towards (call me lazy), but it’s on the to do list.  However, until that point, I depend on my phone for communications in three forms:  Email, SMS, and Voice.  As long as the towers are up, and running, I’ll continue to depend on it.  This means that prolonging my battery life is very important to stay in touch with my business and personal network both day to day, and in the event of an emergency.

So, here are some technical specifications for those of you wondering about the Anker device itself:

  • Monster capacity (15000mAh) charges the iPhone almost 7 times, large-capacity phones like the Galaxy S4 4 times or almost a full charge to an iPad 3,
  • Super-fast charge output (5V / 3A total) through dual USB ports (5V / 2A and 5V / 1A) allow for simultaneous charging of your iPad, iPhone, Android, and more at high speed,
  • Smooth, ivory varnish allows you to power up in style, while 4 status LEDs keep you informed of remaining capacity. Built-in flashlight for dark or low-light environments,
  • Ultra-high density battery cells make this the world’s most compact 15000mAh external battery. Use a 5V / 1.5A adapter (not included) for fastest charging (9-10 hours),
  • Package contents: Anker® Astro E5 External Battery, Micro USB cable, travel pouch, instruction manual.

It was the most powerful battery I could find with the longest battery life.  Here’s an additional review  I found that actually helped me make the decision, and one that is MUCH more detailed than one I can actually give.

I may, at some point, purchase another that I may keep in a faraday cage, as it can be used with many different devices, and may come in handy in the future…  I like the device, and keep it in my backpack that pretty much goes everywhere with me.  It would make a great addition to a Get Home Bag.