Generating electricity from speed breakers

Generating electricity from speed breakers  next time on the roads, don't scoff at the speed-breakers. They could actually light up small villages off the highway.

An amateur innovator in Guwahati has developed a simple contraption that can generate power when a vehicle passes over a speed breaker. Kanak Gogoi, a small time businessman, has developed a mechanism to generate power by converting the potential energy generated by a vehicle going up on a speed breaker into kinetic energy. The innovation has caught the eye of the Indian Institute of Technology (iit), Guwahati, which will fund a pilot project to generate electricity from speed-breakers.

The idea is basic physics. Gogoi has welded five-metre-long metal plates into the speed-breaker instead of the conventional bitumen-and-stone-chip rumble strip. The plates are movable and inclined with the help of a spring-loaded hydraulic system.The fulcrum-attached plates are pushed down when a vehicle moves over them and bounce back to original position as it passes.

"When the vehicle moves over the inclined plates, it gains height resulting in increase in potential energy, which is wasted in a conventional rumble strip,' Gogoi says. "When the plates come down, they crank a lever fitted to a ratchet-wheel type mechanism. This in turn rotates a geared shaft loaded with recoil springs. The output of this shaft is coupled to a dynamo to convert kinetic energy into electricity,' he explains.

iit Guwahati has evaluated the machine and recommended it to the Assam ministry of power for large scale funding. A K Das, a professor at iit's design department says it is a

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