- Public invited to compete to generate energy in ingenious ways on smart flooring at locations across Newcastle as of the Great Exhibition of the North
- Each step produces three joules of energy, which can be stored – the more steps, the more energy created.
- Ingenious Energy Challenge will be at intu, Eldon Square between 23 July and 1 August and the Get North Family Expo on 4-5 August
The Siemens Ingenious Energy Challenge uses innovative Pavegen smart flooring, which generates off-grid power and data from human contact.
Visitors will have seven seconds to move across the floor in the most creative way possible. The kinetic movement on the surface will generate electricity and the user’s actions will be automatically captured as a gif and sent to the participant. Those gifs shared on social media will be judged and the best will win a prize at the end of each day. Participants will get chance to win a Intu shopping voucher worth £50 each day, with the overall winner awarded a gaming PC.
As people move across the flooring, the weight from their footsteps creates a small vertical movement of 5-10mm in the top surface. This compresses the generators below, creating a turning motion which produces around three joules of off-grid electrical energy per step – the more steps, the more energy.
The data from the number of steps and the equivalent amount of energy captured will be recorded across the Challenge.
Carl Ennis, Managing Director of Siemens Energy Management, said:
“The Ingenious Energy Challenge will be huge fun for all involved and will show the effort needed to create a small amount of energy!
“We’re generating energy in lots of clever ways using sources such as the sun, wind and water. But these renewable sources can be unpredictable – you can’t always guarantee they will generate enough electricity at the right time and in the quantity needed. So we need to store some of the electricity they do produce in batteries, to use later and make sure the grid always has power available to manage demand. For example, electricity demand jumped 1,200 megawatts after England’s penalty shootout against Columbia as people opened their fridge doors, or put the kettle on!
“Siemens is working with Newcastle University on a project to understand how we can make batteries work more efficiently and be ‘greener’. This will ultimately help bring down our energy bills and improve the energy system.”
Carol Bell, Executive Director, Great Exhibition of The North, said:
“This project is a fantastic example of some of the great innovations taking place here in the North and is a fun way for people of all ages and abilities to get involved.
“Visitors will have the opportunity to take part in the challenge at two of the destination’s iconic venues this summer – Intu, Eldon Square and St. James’ Park and we encourage everyone to go along and demonstrate some creative moves!”
The challenge will be open to the public in intu Eldon Square between 23 July and 1 August. It will then move to the Get North Family Expo at St. James’ Park on 4-5 August – a free event dedicated to kids, full of interactive activities designed to feed the imagination and expand horizons.
Siemens is also partnering with the Edinburgh Science Festival to bring the Gadget Factory to the Family Expo, open from 2-9 August. The 60 minute activity is open to children aged 8+ where they will learn the basics of circuitry and electronics, producing their own flashing badge to take home.
Spaces in the Gadget Factory are limited to 16 people per workshop and four workshops will run per day. Details at how to register are available at https://getnorth2018.com/venues/get-north-family-expo/.
Great Exhibition of the North is an 80-day Exhibition, which takes place between 22 June and 9 September 2018 across NewcastleGateshead, celebrating great art and culture, design and innovation from across the North. www.getnorth2018.com
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