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Clean Power tokyo

Published on December 4th, 2008 | by Ariel Schwartz

12

Tokyo Train Station Testing Power-Generating Floor

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December 4th, 2008 by
 
tokyo

Yesterday, we took a look at how piezoelectrics— crystals or ceramics that generate voltage when mechanical stress is applied— could allow cell phones to be powered by sound waves. Now the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) has announced that it is installing piezoelectric elements in the floors of its Tokyo station in an attempt to generate power from passengers passing through ticket gates.

JR East will begin its experiment on December 10 and continue it until February 2009. The power-generating floor will cover an area of 25m squared and will be installed at 7 ticket gates and 7 staircase steps inside the gate.

The company expects the floors to produce 1,400 kW/sec each day. If the piezoelectric experiment is successful, the train station floors will ultimately be used to power ticket gates and electronic display systems.

For another example of a piezoelectric floor, check out London’s Bar Surya.

Photo Credit: Altus via flickr under a Creative Commons License

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About the Author

was formerly the editor of CleanTechnica and is a senior editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine, and more. A graduate of Vassar College, she has previously worked in publishing, organic farming, documentary film, and newspaper journalism. Her interests include permaculture, hiking, skiing, music, relocalization, and cob (the building material). She currently resides in San Francisco, CA.



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  • Uncle B

    When the pressure changes of the wind on my walls light my LEDs in my night lights I will be satisfied! Post (GRD) great republican depression era people will not stay up at night. They will obay natures sun rise, sun set model, and have little use for huge whalloping power lines bristling with A.C. Snug, in their “Zero running cost, Zero upkeep, high tech survival shelters, they will be released from industrial age norms, and spend much of their time in green houses tending GMO’ed bug proof, hi- food value veggie crops! Piezo-electrics will serve mankind, but in a much different way in the new America and no easy source of power will go unexploited!

  • Uncle B

    When the pressure changes of the wind on my walls light my LEDs in my night lights I will be satisfied! Post (GRD) great republican depression era people will not stay up at night. They will obay natures sun rise, sun set model, and have little use for huge whalloping power lines bristling with A.C. Snug, in their “Zero running cost, Zero upkeep, high tech survival shelters, they will be released from industrial age norms, and spend much of their time in green houses tending GMO’ed bug proof, hi- food value veggie crops! Piezo-electrics will serve mankind, but in a much different way in the new America and no easy source of power will go unexploited!

  • http://www.headybrew.net Headybrew

    Interesting. This is essentially asking people to generate the power themselves to run the machines (ticket gates ) that they will be using.

    Why not take it a step further? Early telephones had a crank generator in them that you had to actually crank to use the phone. I guess we’re too spoiled to do that today. They have to trick us into generating the power by the walking that we would do anyway. Why not put a crank generator on the ticket gates and require a few seconds cranking from each customer?

  • http://www.headybrew.net Headybrew

    Interesting. This is essentially asking people to generate the power themselves to run the machines (ticket gates ) that they will be using.

    Why not take it a step further? Early telephones had a crank generator in them that you had to actually crank to use the phone. I guess we’re too spoiled to do that today. They have to trick us into generating the power by the walking that we would do anyway. Why not put a crank generator on the ticket gates and require a few seconds cranking from each customer?

  • Rich

    How much energy will it generate per day? Apologies, I don’t understand your ’1400kW/sec’ per day stat.

  • Rich

    How much energy will it generate per day? Apologies, I don’t understand your ’1400kW/sec’ per day stat.

  • http://globalpatriot.com Global Patriot

    Amazing to realize that most anywhere there is stress or vibration we can generate power. One would think the options are virtually unlimited, especially within many facets of the building industry.

  • http://globalpatriot.com Global Patriot

    Amazing to realize that most anywhere there is stress or vibration we can generate power. One would think the options are virtually unlimited, especially within many facets of the building industry.

  • George Cheney

    Does anybody the sound powered phone systems that were used in the US Navel services from WW2 till now.

    These phones were used for internal communications on all ships.

  • George Cheney

    Does anybody the sound powered phone systems that were used in the US Navel services from WW2 till now.

    These phones were used for internal communications on all ships.

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