One of the newest emerging sources for clean energy is kinetic energy. Kinetic energy is power that is gained from motion, and this motion can involve vehicles, individuals, and any other object, really. An interesting thing to note is that kinetic energy at its core relies on basic high school physics. Take the Soccket for example. It looks like a simple soccer ball, but it can actually store electricity by converting the kinetic energy (obtained by playing with the ball) to electricity that is then stored in an internal battery. It has a simple stripped-down gyroscope that rotates as the ball is being tossed around. Soccket’s primary goal is to reach poor areas across the globe and thus eliminate the use of kerosene. The ball also comes with a LED light that runs for up to 3 hours after playing with the ball for as little as 20 minutes.
Another remarkable example is a product by the name of Pavegen. The Pavegen is essentially a floor tile that absorbs kinetic energy when walked on. These tiles contain a small LED that lights up when a person walks over it, informing him/her of their contribution to the Earth. The tiles themselves are produced from recycled materials. The same concept is being developed by KinergyPower, essentially by replacing humans with vehicles, and sidewalks with roads.
The possibilities for kinetic energy are immense. Lighting traffic lights across highways. Providing extra electricity in high-traffic intersections. Obtaining the electricity required to provide lighting for a night club by using the kinetic energy from the people that are dancing, etc.
Whether it is to help poor communities by providing them with clean energy and replacing their current inefficient and hazardous means of energy, or lowering our carbon footprints in a fun, intuitive way, the future of kinetic energy as a renewable energy source is surely optimistic.
Written by Yuval Edrey