WHAT CAN IT DO?
The energy harvested by the Pavegen tile can immediately power off-grid applications such as pedestrian lighting, way-finding solutions and advertising signage or be stored in a battery.
Pavegen tiles have the ability to send wireless data using the energy from footsteps and can be integrated with our API as a key technology for smart cities.
WHAT CAN it be
The technology is best suited to high-footfall urban environments. The Pavegen technology offers the first tangible way for people to engage with renewable energy generation and to provide live data on footfall wherever the tiles are.
HOW GEOTHERMAL WORKS
Geothermal heat pumps take advantage of the nearly constant temperature of the Earth to heat and cool buildings. The shallow ground, or the upper 10 feet of the Earth, maintains a temperature between 50° and 60°F (10°–16°C). This temperature is warmer than the air above it in the winter and cooler in the summer.
Geothermal heat pump systems consist of three parts: the ground heat exchanger, the heat pump unit, and the air delivery system (ductwork). The heat exchanger is a system of pipes called a loop, which is buried in the shallow ground near the building. A fluid (usually water or a mixture of water and antifreeze) circulates through the pipes to absorb or relinquish heat within the ground.
Heat pumps work much like refrigerators, which make a cool place (the inside of the refrigerator) cooler by transferring heat to a relatively warm place (the surrounding room), making it warmer. In the winter, the heat pump removes heat from the heat exchanger and pumps it into the indoor air delivery system, moving heat from the ground to the building’s interior. In the summer, the process is reversed, and the heat pump moves heat from the indoor air into the heat exchanger, effectively moving the heat from indoors to the ground. The heat removed from the indoor air during the summer can also be used to heat water, providing a free source of hot water.
Geothermal heat pumps use much less energy than conventional heating systems, since they draw heat from the ground. They are also more efficient when cooling your home. Not only does this save energy and money, it reduces air pollution.
All areas of the United States have nearly constant shallow-ground temperatures, which are suitable for geothermal heat pumps.
WHAT CAN IT DO
Running water happens all of the time inside of a home and the energy is wasted. The ability to capture its energy without interrupting its pressure exists. You can capture energy from the waste water from a washing machine or dishwasher, or the output from a sink or showerhead while you bathe or clean your dishes.
A small generator is installed at the end of the line in all cases so as not to interrupt the pressure, or so that it does not cause the water companies to have to add power or pressure to the existing line. The turbine will spin and pressure will be slightly reduced as a result, but just the same as a screen does on a sink ,or how shower head reduces pressure. This technology exists today. It has been installed in many commercial bathrooms. When the water runs, the small turbines charge a battery that is used to power the soap dispenser. ( you know the ones that never have soap in them). In our design the power is routed to our central storage system inside of the home and becomes part of our power creating ability. It is not a lot of production, although it is measurable. It can really add up over time considering a four person household takes 4 showers a day, brushes teeth and washes hands. Discharge from the washing machine and dishwasher over time add up as well. Each faucet and showerhead has these installed throughout the home.
WHAT CAN IT DO
Your home creates enough power to live comfortably without sacrificing any of today’s technologies or conveniences. Today you can have it all and have it in your automobile. Cars ranging from the Nissan Leaf to the Tesla Model S can be powered from your energy producing home. I’ll use my own personal story and math as an example. I used to spend $275 per month on Gasoline. I drive the Tesla by choice.
By choice I mean I used to drive a BMW 5 series, a luxury car. The Model S handles as well, if not better, and is faster. It has a similar cache, if not more. If you deduct the $275 per month that I do not spend on gasoline over a five year period, you can deduct 16,500 off of the price of a Tesla. If you choose the $65,000 60 kW model, your cost is very similar to a well-equipped % series. The Nissan Leaf would be the equivalent of a smaller car with less of a range but with a similar story.
Perhaps a car this size would be driven by someone who only spent $125 per month on gasoline. Over a five year period that would equate to $7,500 over a five year period. AND your home can create the clean energy you need to power your car.
Think about your home providing you with the power and how close your power source is to its use. Then think about an oil rig, far away from most people reading this. The oil is shipped to a refinery. The refinery cooks the oil. Separates the gasoline during the cooking process, then stores and ships the gas to a station. Insane when you really think about it.
Storage will be a critical component of the new grid. Each home will have the ability to store the majority of the energy that it uses. This wide distribution will narrow the insane search for dirty fuel to turn massive turbines or power dangerous nuclear plants. It will reduce the exposure to threats via natural disaster or terrorist activity. This will in turn reduce the cost of protecting the grid as it currently exists which will reduce the unseen costs of protecting our power plants and protecting the fuel production and transportation costs. I have not factored these costs into the formulas, however they are enormous. Part of the reason many governments are creating subsidy to incent purchasing these types of products is because they too understand the underlying capitol and human cost in our current energy paradigm.
There are several storage applications under development. Ion Lithium leads the race due to its chemistry and light weight. It can be stored inside or outside and if grid tied without depleting its charge below 20% or being 100% charged too often, it is thought to be able to last for more than 10 years. At a larger scale, perhaps a neighborhood, it can be scaled up the 1-2 gigawatts (1 million watts) without taking up much geography. This chemistry and other chemistries are also being looked at by utility to store off peak power. Currently off peak power pumps water uphill, so that it can use gravity to power turbines when needed. Seems kind of prehistoric to me. Other methods of storing excess power are pumping air compressors that decompress at a later date. Clean, but the power used to store this is dirty or dangerous.
Battery and Flywheel in my opinion are both very promising, as both can store and hold large amounts of power in a small area. Pumped Hydro is the most cost effective, but uses water and quite a large area to store its energy.
Here is an example of two companies producing storage, one is BYD, and the other is TESLA through its partnership with Solar City. And some preliminary information on Flywheel technology.
Human Power Generator converts kinetic energy into electricity and directly output to small household appliances. An optional Mobile Power Storage System can be connected with the Human Power Generator for electricity storage purposes, the stored electricity will then be inverted back to standard pure sine wave AC power for lightings, computers, televisions, radio, chargers, fruit mixers, oxygen machines, electric fans, etc, or other small household appliances. This zero emission and quiet renewable energy power generator is not subject to any limitations, as long as human power is available.
The spirit of designing this human power generator is to promote applications of renewable energy and also can be used as emergency home power backup at the same time.