By Amy Kraft
Posting in Cities
London-based startup company Pavegen Systems designed floor tiles that convert kinetic energy from footsteps into renewable electricity.
This summer shoppers at the Westfield Stratford City shopping center in east London will be generating more than revenue for the stores. Visitors will also be creating power by walking over specially designed floor tiles.
Pavegen Systems, a London-based startup company, produced floor tiles that convert kinetic energy from footsteps into renewable electricity. The power generated from the thousands of visitors to the shopping mecca will be stored and used for a variety of applications including pedestrian lighting and advertising.
“The Pavegen technology offers the first tangible way for people to engage with renewable energy generation,” Pavegen Systems said in a statement.
One footstep can produce about 7 watts of electricity depending on a person’s weight. Once the energy is converted into electricity, 5 percent of it is used to light the tile and 95 percent is stored for later use or fed directly to the application it is meant to power.
The tiles are 45-by-60 centimeters and glow a bright green when they are stepped on. They are made of recycled rubber and other recycled materials and were designed to be retrofitted in place of existing flooring systems.
"Nearly 30 permanent and temporary Pavegen projects have been installed in the U.K. and Europe. For two years now, four of its tiles have lined a hallway at the Simon Langton Grammar School for Boys near Canterbury, capturing energy from footfalls of its 1,100 students to keep the corridor lit. Pavegen has also harnessed music festival attendees' foot-stamping to charge cell phones and power LED lights."
Power generating tiles are a growing trend across the world. Pavegen is currently working with the German technology company Siemens to install the tiles in a square in Australia to power the lights there. There are also plans for power generating tiles in Lodon train stations in schools where it can be used to power the lights.
Photo via Pavegen Systems
May 20, 2012
energy units: just so! Joules, not Watts NB a pliable pathway does require more energy from the pedestrian! (cf running/training on sand-dunes) a good A-level physics modelling challenge ? Philip Bradfield
"One footstep can produce about 7 watts of electricity" ... for how long??? The watt is a unit of power, not energy. Pavegen is collecting energy. The unit of energy is the Joule (= 1 Watt Second). Similar misuses of units are widespread - people talk about a 100 megabit speed. That's like talking about a 50 mile speed limit. Speed must include time so it should be 100 megabits per second, just as a speed is measured in miles per hour. It would be much appreciated if journalists used the correct units and so correctly educated the less technically knowledgeable, rather than incorrectly educating. If Amy Kraft was simply reproducing Pavegen's promotional information, then the main fault lies with Pavegen, but it's still a journalist's responsibility to check 'facts'.
Without knowing how long it takes these "generators" to offset their costs with energy saved - it's kind of makes the entire article nothing more than a curiosity - and effectively useless. Economic feasibility is just such a nag.
@JohnMcGrew - your trash, you threw that energy away and Pavegen is picking it up off the ground and using it. :) @rideshare20 - that depends on the technology. Does it depend on weight or impact to generate the power? A wheel rolling over it will create different forces than a foot impacting on it. I've seen other articles about using traffic to generate electricity so it is being researched.
Brilliant and very clever idea, but you can generate more watts by putting them on our highways instead.
How did I "throw it away"? I exerted energy and I moved forward. Other than a minute bit of heat lost to friction with the ground and wind resistance, little energy is lost. The logic behind this system is that it's going to "harvest" energy. If so little energy is lost in walking, where is this energy going to come from?
as Frances implied I am dazzled that people able to profit $5138 in four weeks on the computer. have you seen this site..YahooJob.notlong.CoM