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Kinetic Energy

Brother's AA-size Vibration Energy Cell battery prototype whose generator and rechargeable...

A number of kinetic energy chargers have been hitting the market in recent years including the nPower PEG. Researchers have also been working to improve the technology, developing such devices as the Kinetic Energy Cell and a tiny generator that derives electrical energy from the vibrations and movements that occur within its environment. Now Brother Industries Ltd., a company better known for its printers, has put the technology into a form factor that should prove much more versatile – a battery. Its Vibration Energy Cell batteries are deigned to replace AA or AAA batteries in some low power devices that can then be powered with a shake.  Read More

Jump your way to better health and recharge your batteries at the same time with the E Rop...

When reporting on the BunBun human-powered flashlight back in March, Gizmag's Rick Martin mused on the potential for putting a similar charging mechanism into skipping rope handles... which is just what Kyung Guk Lee has done with this design concept. The e-rope lets you recharge your AA batteries while you skip your way to better health.  Read More

The nPower PEG: US$150 kinetic energy harvester charges smartphones off-the-grid

The nPower PEG we first tried in prototype form at CES 2009 finally goes on sale tomorrow (May 3, 2010). The PEG is a light-weight, titanium encased portable generator that can recharge a handheld device (phone, media player, camera, GPS etc.) when you are away from the grid, though it is unlike any other mobile power solutions in that you DON'T need any fuel, don't need to turn hand cranks and you don't need the sun. The US$150 PEG is 9 inches long, weighs 9 ounces and harvests kinetic energy as you move about in your daily life. Just put it in your backpack, bumbag, handbag, brief case or glovebox and it will collect and store energy from your movements. The first 1000 units will appropriately be engraved as “First Mover” Editions.  Read More

Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers has installed install two electricity-producing bicycles wh...

If you find yourself in an expensive hotel without the funds to cover that three-course seafood buffet you've just demolished, you may not be led to the back of the kitchen to scrub pots and pans after all... you could be off to the gym instead. Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers has installed two electricity-producing bicycles which are connected to the hotel's main electricity supply. Guests who pedal hard enough not only get a dose of environmental feel-goodness, but can also score a complimentary meal.  Read More

Diagram of the regenerative shock absorber and the cross section of the magnet assembly

Only 10-16 percent of the fuel energy is used to drive the car during everyday usage – that is, to overcome the resistance from road friction and air drag and actually transport the vehicle forward. That amounts to a lot of energy being wasted. Hybrid cars recapture some of the energy usually lost in braking but the dissipation of vibration energy by shock absorbers in the vehicle suspension remains an untapped source of potential energy. To harvest this lost energy, researchers have designed and tested a shock absorber that can be retrofitted to cars to convert the kinetic energy of suspension vibration between the wheel and sprung mass into useful electrical power.  Read More

Schematic of FLUXXlab's Revolution Door, a power-generating revolving door

Here’s how the natural energy cycle works: the sun creates energy when it causes the plants to grow, the plants create energy when they’re eaten by animals, the animals and the plants create energy when they’re consumed by people, and then the people create energy when they do things like open doors. That’s sort of the idea, anyway, and it’s one that New York architectural designers Carmen Trudell and Jenny Broutin have tried to express through their design firm, FLUXXlab. They have created several clever devices designed to convert human energy into electricity, and to educate people on their place within the energy cycle.  Read More

Kinetic energy harnessed from the rocking motion is converted and stored as electricity to...

It's ironic that I should be writing this on a 13 hour stopover at an airport doling out foreign notes for endless coffees in Starbucks to justify my use of their power socket and WiFi. What I really need right now is a comfortable fold-out rocking chair that converts my languorous rocking movement into electrical energy to power my laptop. If only such a thing existed! Well, it might not be too far away. The Empower chair won second prize out of 18 shortlisted designs showcased at the Greener Gadgets 2010 Conference...  Read More

Corky from designer Adele Peters, a finalist is this year's Greener Gadgets Design Competi...

Freeing oneself from the shackles of wired PC periphery does come at a cost. In order to power such liberation, users rely on batteries. Even rechargeable ones impede workflow when they run out of juice. Designer Adele Peters proposes capturing the energy from moving, clicking and scrolling and using it to power Corky, a kinetic mouse made from recycled materials.  Read More

A young lad tests out the prototype sOccket power-generating soccer ball in a Durban, Sout...

What kid doesn’t like kicking around a soccer ball? Imagine if this fun activity could also provide enough energy to power something useful in a modest off-grid African village, like a reliable light to cook by or an emergency mobile phone. The sOccket is a prototype soccer ball that captures kinetic energy when it is kicked or thrown, stores it in an internal battery and makes that energy available for a myriad of small but useful purposes. In other words, it’s a fun, portable energy-harvesting power source that is designed to take a kicking.  Read More

The Dancepants kinetic music player concept could make you move if you want to groove

When did running get so complicated? Remember the good old days when going for a run was as easy as changing shoes and heading out the front door? Now, there’s a plethora of running gear and gadgets - ranging from heart rate monitors to state-of-the-art running shoes. It seems that not many runners leave home without their MP3 players either, but would they be prepared to work hard for their music? The Dancepants kinetic music player is a new design concept that would see runners harnessing their kinetic energy to power their music player. Yep, you’ve got to keep moving to keep grooving.  Read More

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