Use walking and leg work outs for a benefit besides just getting a ripped physique

Ngalande’s Green Erg generator is a wheeled device, attached by a simple harness that’s designed to trundle along behind a person who’s walking. As the user walks along, the rubber-coated rollers keep in good contact with the ground–even on rough, bumpy terrain–and spin a dynamo that generates power. According to Dr. Ngalande using it doesn’t place a noticeable burden on the wearer: “We have tested it on moist lawns and it has worked. It is very smooth, so much that you basically don’t feel any disturbance as you move along.” And it’s powerful enough to put out more than 2 watts at normal walking speed–more power would be produced at running pace, but it’s also ideal for tagging onto an ox cart, or even a bicycle due to its simplicity. There are a number of technologies bubbling away that make use of “human power.” We covered a Japanese experiment to use commuter footsteps to drive machines in railway stations, and the “dance-floor power station” that uses similar principles hit the news last year. There’s also considerable research by the space industry and the military into using astronauts and soldier’s motions to generate power for their gizmos. That technology is a little more sophisticated, involving piezoelectric power generators and the like, but the principle is the same. Most interesting of all is some research into nanotech-embedded fabrics that would make your clothes generate power as you move without you even noticing. –