One Step Closer To Becoming The Human Battery

from the neo?--is-that-you? dept

Well, one side effect of gasoline prices being so high these days is that it's going to force people to start looking at alternative forms of generating energy. One area that's often overlooked is how much energy is generated by the everyday actions of people. Sure, we've got those watches that charge themselves based on movement, but, that's pretty minor (and who wears watches any more anyway?). So, some researchers are taking a similar concept and are trying to apply it to a backpack. The backpack is basically set on springs, and the energy of the pack shifting up and down is stored and can be used to power small electronics. So, for example, you could power your own mobile phone or mp3 player just by walking around (with a heavy backpack on your back). Of course, it was developed mainly for military uses, and it's not like the average person is carrying around a backpack all the time anyway. However, as people keep buying more gadgets, maybe they'll need a backpack to tote them around anyway -- and if so, why not one that will power the gadgets at the same time?

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    mhh5, Sep 8th, 2005 @ 7:27pm


    heh. thought this post was going to be about using stomach acids to actually create an internal human battery....

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    dorpus, Sep 8th, 2005 @ 7:42pm

    Bum Rush Power

    Couldn't the kinetic energy of crowds walking into a subway station on a treadmill propel a subway train? Crowds at Asian train stations are sometimes known to create random tsunami effects, e.g. when the last train is about to leave, which causes a shockwave to go through crowds, breaking bones and flinging people high into the air.

    Or you could drive through Michigan, where some street lights are twice as tall as normal and emit an ungodly amount of lumens, and it feels like a religious experience to have that thing shine down into your car.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    googly eyes, Sep 8th, 2005 @ 8:08pm

    Then there is this:

    I want wuna deez

    The solar Scottevest

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. icon
    Daniel (profile), Sep 8th, 2005 @ 9:22pm

    No Subject Given

    theres all sorts of things you could do instead, for example stick a dunamo on the turnstiles to power well, next to nothing really so its pretty pointless.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Pete Austin, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 2:30am

    Other unconventional power sources

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    NoDef, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 5:01am

    No Free Lunch

    This has popped up everywhere, but I still don't get it. This backpack doesn't produce energy, it just converts 'wasted' energy from walking with a backpack. The more energy you want from the backpack, the more energy the user needs to 'waste' making the backpack even more difficult to carry. It seems one could just design a backpack which 'wastes' less enabling the user to carry more weight. (part of which might be a hand cranked generator which would be even more efficient [weight/power] at generating electricity than this backpack!)

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 8:25am

    Re: No Free Lunch

    its for people who are already carrying a backpack, right? so you're carrying the stuff already, and walking for whatever reason - hiking, a soldier doing drills, whatever - why not harness that wasted energy to be used later?

    is this idea about saving wasted energy comparable to hybrid cars recharging when you use the brakes? i'm honestly not up to date on this, so let me know if i'm saying anything incorrectly - but the cars didnt used to do that. but once they realized they could harness the energy that was being produced, they did it and it made it more efficient and better overall.

    doesnt that same idea apply to this backpack stuff?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Ivan Sick, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 8:53am

    Re: Bum Rush Power

    No. No, it couldn't.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    Bill, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 10:02am

    how about this

    a windup flashlight, with a port to charge your phone.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 9th, 2005 @ 10:04am

    Re: No Free Lunch

    Rather than regenerative breaking, this is more like running the air conditioner compresser off of the drive train of a car. I think the point of the original post was that one could just as easily redesign the backpack to reduce the amount of wasted effort, this doesn't apply to breaking where you must waste (or transfer) the energy to acheieve a goal.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Jasper, Sep 12th, 2005 @ 4:34am

    No Subject Given

    I'm waiting for the ultimate human-powered solution that will solve 2 of mankind's greatest problems at once: electricity from burning fat. "I need to get some pizza, my iPod's running low."

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. identicon
    tiffany sheppard, Feb 9th, 2007 @ 10:12am

    hello there

    i think the project that you,ve made is the coolest ever i love that and i am doing the same one and i hope it is as good as yours

    P.S By tiffany loves the project

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. identicon
    bvb, Oct 15th, 2007 @ 3:42pm


    this is the worst site ever

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. identicon
    josh, Dec 1st, 2007 @ 5:36am

    nice page

    Thanks it gave me alot of info

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15. identicon
    Josh, Jan 31st, 2008 @ 11:50am

    kool but it coulent happen

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
Insider Shop - Show Your Support!

Hide this ad »
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Chat
Hide this ad »
Recent Stories
Hide this ad »


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.