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Energy harvesting floors

The New York Times reports on a cutting-edge London architecture firm who have come up with a genius plan to harvest free green electricity from human footsteps:

The average human being generates about eight watts of energy with each step, most of which is expended as vibration. It may not sound like much, but take the 30,000 or more people who pass through a major-city subway hub at rush hour, and suddenly you’ve got serious power. That’s usually a problem for architects and engineers, who have to design structures to withstand such small but persistent pressure. But the Facility, a London architecture firm, sees it as an opportunity. The company proposes putting small hydraulic generators in floors to capture vibration and convert it into electricity.

Read the full story at the New York Times.