See Innowattech Collect Energy From the Road, In Action

Green sites have been commenting on the "energy parasite": Innowattech, including our own Lloyd. The Israeli company has developed a system using energy harvesting piezoelectric crystals to sequester the mechanical energy generated on highways, the runway and the railway.

On December 30th, the company opens its tech to you the public to come see for yourself. Too good to be true? Come see it in action and judge for yourself: the public is invited to attend a demonstration of the technology on December 30, 2008 at the Technion in Haifa, Israel. Details on the company website.

According to my friend Daniel on Green Prophet, "No stone is left unturned in our desperate search for energy sources to wean us from our dependence on fossil fuels. Sources of primary renewable energy, like solar, wind, and geothermal are the primary focus, but some overlooked sources are also getting attention, because every little bit counts."

We've seen reports on ways humans can generate electricity from stationary workout bikes, dance club floors and Japanese subway stations.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

The vibrations caused by the vehicles are transformed into an electric current by piezoelectric generators (IPEG), solid state crystals that convert mechanical stress into current or voltage. The IPEG are connected to electrical storage or and electric grid and can be used for lighting, or eventually for charging electric vehicles.

Additional benefits is that the system records weight, frequency and speed of the vehicles, giving extra information to"create smart roads", ones that can be optimized for traffic flow, to reduce congestion and reduce pollution further, reports Daniel.

"While this clever solution does not create its own energy, it can still provide commercial amounts, an estimated 500 kW per kilometer for busy highways. The company presents a cost table comparing various power technologies, although the numbers they present are different from the ones I'm familiar with (for example, as far as I know, solar power is on the order of 30 cents per kWh, and the payback times mentioned for the subsidized photovoltaic systems in Israel is about 10 years)."

MAKE YOUR OWN COMPARISONS:

More on energy harvesting:
Highway Robbery: Piezoelectric Roadways
Revolving Door Generates Energy, Maybe
Japan's Producing Electricity at Train Station Gates

::Green Prophet

Tags: Commuting | Driving | Energy Efficiency | Fuel Efficiency | Israel

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