It is amazing to see how creative people can get with finding and discovering new concepts and ways to produce energy. Some methods are absolutely mind-boggling and force you to ponder at the practicality of such a solution. Some options might lead to some energy generation – albeit too minor to be even considered – hence, insignificant. Nevertheless, it would be worthwhile to think over such options and appreciate the creative thought process of the inventor.
Japanese railway stations to harness energy from passenger movements
East Japan Railway Company is researching and trying to develop eco-friendly railway stations that would be powered by human movement – an innovative idea. Hence the passengers would themselves be responsible for transporting them across – with their very own energy. This concept is based on ‘piezo’ technology as some ‘piezo’ components would be placed under the floor of the ticket gates that would generate energy from the movement of passengers walking over it. A prototype of this energy-producing device is presently under trial in Shibuya, and if all turns out well, then we would have self-sufficient railway stations in the near future.
Cow Poop: Methane-based green electricity in California
We all are aware of cow waste that is used for producing manure for farming and biogas. However, David Abers envisions biogas to be the major power source for providing electricity to a hundred households on a daily basis. His dream project – the Vintage Dairy Biogas Project –comprises a lake equal to the area of five football fields with a depth of 33 feet, filled with liquid cattle waste. However, the process of producing methane is quite different and supposedly more efficient as the liquid waste is then transferred into a covered pit which separates the solid material from the liquid. This enables the hydrogen sulfide and CO2 to be separated from the liquid excreta residue to produce pure methane gas.
Energy produced by bouncing breasts
We do understand that energy is produced by anything that is in motion – it could be through machines or maybe through human motion – but breasts producing energy is a little bit out of context. This is precisely what Adrienne So from San Francisco claims as she believes that women having big breasts can generate energy from the bouncing motion. This energy can be tapped through special bras that have elastic material with nanowire fabric that would help in generating energy. This does seem like a far-fetched option of producing energy.
Sonea Energy Absorbing System captures noise and turns it into energy
Industrial designers Jihoon Kim, Boyeon Kim, Myung-Suk Kim and Da-Woon Chun havediscovered an innovative method of converting noise to generate a renewable energy alternative by devising an energy-absorbing device that utilizes all the noise in our surroundings to convert it into energy. This device called the “Sonea” has the capacity of generating approximately 30-watts of clean energy out of one decibel of sound.
Generating energy through a rocking chair
This way of harnessing energy is a rather relaxing way – as we tend to use our rocking chair quite often. Designed by Petr Novak, this chair can help you generate energy as you habitually sit on the rocking chair for your regular reading sessions. The energy harnessed can then be stored in batteries or can also help you read by lighting up your book through the LED lamp that is powered from under the seat.
Soccket: An energy-generating soccer ball
Many developing countries use kerosene-fueled lamps to lighten up their nights – which is actually harmful because of its dangerous fumes that result in the production of 190 million MT of carbon dioxide each year. Four Harvard engineering students have tried to find a solution for this by designing the ‘Soccket‘ which is a soccer ball that generates energy when kicked. It produces energy throughout daytime in order to provide light after sunset. This is a great way to keep fit by playing soccer and also to produce electricity.
Generating footstep energy through a special flooring system
The Design School in Loughborough has devised a unique flooring system that is capable of generating electricity from footsteps. This design by Pavegen Systems has even won an award in the ‘Big Idea’ category at a prestigious UK business award ceremony honoring ethical businesses. In this concept, the floor is cleverly designed to transform the kinetic energy of footsteps into electricity – a highly sustainable source of renewable energy.
Nanogenerator-equipped devices for harnessing running motion
If you’re an avid runner, then your running shoes can turn into devices for generating energy and converting your kinetic motion into electricity. This idea has been conceptualized by Lola Mensa who has invented a device which when placed in your running shoes would harness the energy of your movement in batteries. This device called the ‘Cargador De Celular‘ is comprised of nanogenerators that would help in producing electricity that would be stored in the batteries of the device. After your run, you can remove the device and use the energy for powering your laptop or mobile phone.
Fluxxlab harnesses energy from revolving doors to produce green electricity
The energy generated from revolving doors can also be a potential energy source as discovered by the designers and Fluxxlan studio in New York – who believe that many buildings across the US having revolving doors can now tap this hidden source. Called the ‘Revolution Door’, this would have a turbine that would capture the kinetic energy and then transport it to an installation site.
This bizarre concept by the Japanese has lingerie producing energy. The corset-like braactually has solar panels fitted in to it that is capable of powering a display board. Seems like this would only work for skimpily dressed models, or for beach babes, otherwise it seems pretty impractical.