Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Harnessing the Energy of Exercise

Have you ever been at your local fitness facility with your uncharged iPod and looked around at all the people alongside you on treadmills and bikes and got to thinking: "How strange is this? I mean, really... all the electricity required to run these machines and all this human energy gone to waste? There's got to be some room for greenprovement here, no?"

Well I have. All the time actually. And apparently the masterminds behind a new system at the Copenhagen Crowne Plaza Hotel have too. They've connected exercise bikes to a generator that harnesses approximately 10 watt-hours of electricity per 15 minute ride. Not only to the riders get some cardio and a little reduction in their carbon footprint - the hotel even offers a meal voucher in exchange for their efforts. Read more about the system here.

So how much longer until all gyms are powered by generators charged by patrons' exercise? And why stop at buildings? How about electronics? Researchers at MIT are leading the pack in this technology. Meet the Copenhagen Wheel:


Niko said...

I must say that an entire days worth of energy can probably be accomplished by one full spinning class! Neat stuff :)

Deborah said...

Considering that we humans used to have to expend energy to get our food it sorta makes perfect sense, no?

Now that I have been reading about it I've gotten to thinking, "Duh" you know? We've been harnessing wind and solar energy so why not human energy?

I do believe there is a green gym doing this already - and that I posted about it sometme last year - but it certainly isn't an idea spreading fast enough.

This Copenhagen wheel is way cool too cause you sorta get to spend your enrgy how you want it.