new energy generation

Ever thought that maybe the energy expended to shake your booty at a dance club could be converted to useful electricity?

I haven’t been clubbing in a long time, but when I do it is usually a good workout, mostly from the bouncing around. Piezoelectric energy allows mechanical stress to generate electric potential. The panels put in a dance floor, or any flooring actually, generate electricity whenever the weight of a person pushed the floor down.

Here is a video that explains this concept:


There is talk of putting this technology in high traffic areas such as terminals for public transportation (in the turnstiles especially), or on sidewalks, or roads. There are some real life examples of this technology in use in Tokyo subways and dance clubs. In some cases, the piezoelectricity generated could provide up to 60% of the power needs of the dance club.

I’m interested in where this technology can go. There are, of course, limitations, as does every type of technology. But there is a lot of potential for piezoelectricity to develop into an important component for construction and retrofitting in urban centers. I think that the best part about this is that it is taking mechanical energy from people doing things they would normally do without a noticeable impact, and returning it into a useable form which is electricity.

Here is another fun video:

New Energy Generation – Ruslana

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7 Responses

  1. Piezoelectricity in mini form and gecko tape | science before breakfast says

    [...] are some articles a friend sent to me recently (thanks Katie!). I posted earlier about piezoelectricity being used in dance clubs and subway turnstiles, but here is an article [...]

  2. Nat says

    Yeah, I went to an ENT (the doctor, not the Tolkienian creature) a while back and they included a bone conduction device as a part of a hearing test that they did. It was really cool. Also, the audiologist doing the test told me I was the first person she’d ever tested who knew what it was. Yay.

  3. chewbear says

    I hadn’t heard of the bone conduction technology. That is really interesting! I will have to read more about it. Thanks!
    Another cool part about piezoelectric energy is that it could also be used on train tracks, so you could imagine some kind of cycle where it feeds back into powering the subway system.

  4. Nat says

    I think this is really great. I’m also really interested in where it can go.

    It’s also interesting what we’re doing with this effect in reverse- i.e., using electric potential to generate mechanical vibrations. Bone conduction technology is an example of this, I’m pretty sure. I seem to recall a Japanese cell phone company releasing a bone-conducting cell phone that, by directly conducting vibrations through the skull, makes it possible to hear your phone clearly even in loud and crowded environments.

    Okay, slight tangent. But I guess what I’m really getting at is that technology is cool. And piezo-electric energy generation really has some awesome promise. I can’t wait until it comes into its own.

  5. Salina says

    Or piezoelectric party clothes that light up with every kick, grind, or episode of dryhumping.

  6. chewbear says

    yeah! i want to go dancing in a sustainable dance club!

  7. Lili says

    So cool!