One Small Bump For Man, One Giant Watt For Energy!


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It's been a long day - you are driving on a busy road and are about to doze off - then...boink! Your car veers over a speed bump and you're wide awake again.

Besides waking up sleepy car drivers, speed bumps also help slow down traffic in busy areas. Now, Peter Hughes, a former advisor to the UN on renewable green energy, has devised yet one more job for the "sleeping policemen" - capturing the kinetic energy produced by cars and utilizing it to power street lights, traffic lights and road signs.

The green speed bumps that will replace the current coventional ones, comprise of a number of panels that rise and fall, as a vehicle passes over them. This motion sets off a cog, which helps turns a motor, generating electricity. Hughes estimates that ten ramps could produce the same amount of energy as a wind turbine.

While this sounds great, the initial cost of installing them is steep, ranging between $40,000 to $110,000 USD, compared to regular speedbumps, which cost about $3,000 USD. However, these panels pay for themselves quite quickly, producing between $1.50 to $5.00 USD, worth of energy every hour, for up to 16 hours a day. This translates to between $9,000 USD to $35,000 USD worth of energy, that can be generated in a year.

An added bonus? Any excess electricity produced, can be fed to the National electricity grid, for general consumption. Also, on roads that do not need speed bumps, the panel can be laid flat and still be able to capture the otherwise wasted energy.

Hughes still needs to convince the officials in England though. There are 30,000 speed bumps in London alone. While two hundred city councils are interested, only one, Ealing,in West London has signed up, allocating about $250,000 USD for the project. But, we are sure that if successful, a lot of people not only in England, but everywhere in the world will be interested in installing this green source of energy

This isn't the first time kinetic energy has been harnessed. A nightclub in Rotterdam, Netherlands, is partially powered by the people who come to dance. It has also been discovered that mall shoppers could power a shopping center's lighting, by just browsing around. Pretty cool!

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  • cool_dude_girlTuesday, November 5, 2019 at 5:22 pm
    this is really short but interesting and cool am I right or what ( :
    • peteral
      peteralThursday, June 9, 2016 at 2:49 pm
      going green world
      • skywars_killer
        skywars_killerMonday, May 23, 2016 at 8:31 am
        • adriannuSunday, October 26, 2014 at 6:38 pm
          sooo cool
          • LamaraWednesday, April 16, 2014 at 12:37 pm
            A renewable resores is trees They call it renewable because it can be renewed
            • emers
              emersWednesday, April 16, 2014 at 12:36 pm
              Sun and water these are renewable brecause they never run out. Oil, gas, coal and fossil fuel are called non renewable because once you use it all it can't be remade. One cool thing in this is how it send shocks
              • mdykes
                mdykesWednesday, April 16, 2014 at 1:01 pm
                i agree emily
              • madster
                madsterTuesday, April 15, 2014 at 9:27 am
                This article is to cool!!!
                • BethanyTuesday, December 17, 2013 at 6:42 am
                  I like it!
                  • jacobogmediaarts
                    jacobogmediaartsWednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:52 am
                    It is cool because people pass over speed bumps every day, so that means electricity is "created" everyday!
                    • jeffreypmediaarts
                      jeffreypmediaartsWednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:42 am
                      Wow that is cool will that come out